Congressman Tim Griffin: President Obama Needs A Sequester Refresher

Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement regarding the coming sequester cuts, scheduled to take effect on March 1, 2013:

“President Obama needs a sequester refresher.  Yesterday he wondered why anyone would wait until the ‘last minute’ to address his sequester idea.  Well, the House already passed legislation replacing President Obama’s sequester idea with sensible and targeted savings—we passed it more than 412,000 minutes ago, and we’re still waiting on the Senate and President Obama to act.  We also passed a responsible alternative last fall, but with only eight days left until it takes effect, the President is simply not serious about ending Washington’s spending addiction.  It should be noted that when you compromise with the President—as many people have demanded—the final deal will inevitably include some of his bad ideas, and the sequester is a prime example.  As you can see in this video, he was for the sequester before he was against it, and now he’s using it as another opportunity to raise taxes on working families.”

A Sequester Refresher for President Obama

Point 1:  The sequester was President Obama’s idea.

VIDEO: Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) says that the sequester was President Obama’s idea:  “The President’s part of the sequester – the White House recommended it, frankly, back in August 2011, so now we’re feeling the effects of it. Now I don’t want to say the President is solely to blame – he’s not – it’s both the President and Congress.”  (Senator Max Baucus, Interview With KTVQ (CBS), 2/19/13)

VIDEO: White House Press Secretary Jay Carney says the sequester was our idea: “The Sequester was one of the ideas put forward, yes by the President’s team.”  (Jay Carney on Fox News’ Special Report with Brett Bair, 02/12/13)

Journalist Bob Woodward says sequester was President Obama’s idea:  “At 2:30 p.m. Lew and Nabors went to the Senate to meet with Reid and his chief of staff, David Krone, ‘We have an idea for the trigger,’ Lew said. ‘What’s the idea?’ Reid asked skeptically.  ‘Sequestration.’”  (Bob Woodward, The Price of Politics, Simon & Schuster, 2012, pg. 326)

Point 2: President Obama strongly defended his sequester idea in Nov. 2011.

VIDEO: President Obama: I will veto any effort to get rid of the sequester cuts:  “Already, some in Congress are trying to undo these automatic spending cuts.  My message to them is simple:  No.  I will veto any effort to get rid of those automatic spending cuts – domestic and defense spending.  There will be no easy off-ramps on this one.”  (President Barack Obama, White House Press Conference, 11/21/11)

Point 3: The House has passed three measures that address President Obama’s sequestration idea.

House Republicans passed H.R. 5652, the Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act, on May 10, 2012; H.R. 6365, the National Security and Job Protection Act, on September 13, 2012; and H.R. 6684, the Spending Reduction Act, on December 20, 2012.