Sequestration Articles

AWOL on the Defense Budget

Mar 30, 2015

"The single biggest threat to our national security is our debt.”

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A Rallying Call for Our Nation’s Defense

10:45 AM, Feb 16, 2015

Last week, the government confirmed that Kayla Mueller had died while in the custody of ISIS. In the weeks prior, we learned about the brutal murders of three innocent people -- the beheading of two Japanese citizens and the immolation of a Jordanian pilot.

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Border Patrol Shifted $7M From Border Fence to Salaries

Government agencies largely avoided sequestration furloughs in 2013.
6:36 AM, Mar 13, 2014

As sequestration bore down in February 2013, the threat of furloughs for thousands of government workers was a common refrain from those warning of the dire effects of the across the board budget cuts.

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For the Sake of Repeal, Support the Deal

9:40 AM, Dec 12, 2013

Let me add a word to my comments from Tuesday night supporting the budget deal.

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Good Deal

10:32 PM, Dec 10, 2013

The budget deal announced today is a good deal for conservatives and Republicans.

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Patronizing a Patriot

4:25 PM, Dec 04, 2013

House Armed Services Committee chairman Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon doesn’t look like an insurgent.  The quintessential Californian – a man of Reaganesque optimism whose congressional district now includes the Gipper’s presidential library – McKeon has been a steadfast supporter of House speaker John Boehner in turbulent times. Yet, to the green-eyeshade editorialists of the Wall Street Journal, McKeon is leading a “rebellion” of defense hawks, an “act of masochism” threatening the Holy of Holies: the sequestration provision of the Budget Control Act (BCA). McKeon’s crime is that he’s hoping for a 2014 budget deal that would reduce the amount of defense sequestration by half.

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Not Combat Ready

2:08 PM, Oct 22, 2013

It is widely recognized that the effects of the Sequester are felt most emphatically at the Pentagon and in the services. As reported by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. at Breaking Defense, the point was driven home, yesterday, by chief of staff of the Army, General Ray Ordierno, who said:

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'From Merely Stupid to Dangerous: The Sequester’s Effects on National and Economic Security'

4:14 PM, Oct 14, 2013

A new report on sequestration's impact on defense from the Bipartisan Policy Center:

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Going, Going, Gone

The arguments that justified Obama­care are already being discredited. Here’s how to replace it.
Sep 02, 2013

In the continuing debate over Obamacare, both the law’s champions and its critics are now focused largely on the mechanics of implementation. This is understandable. The insurance exchanges are supposed to launch October 1, most of the law’s other major provisions take effect January 1, and every week seems to bring fresh news of some delay or dysfunction for critics to highlight and defenders to justify or dismiss. 

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Sequestration: Federal Court-Appointed Attorneys Face $15/Hour Cut

12:21 PM, Aug 19, 2013

The latest sequester victim: lawyers. As of September 1, court-appointed panel attorneys for the federal defender program will be hit with a $15/hour reduction in compensation.  The following announcement appeared Monday on the United States Courts website:

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Latest Sequestration Victim: Corporate Tax Credits

1:26 PM, Aug 13, 2013

Sequestration has been blamed for everything from cancelled White House tours to military cutbacks that threaten national security to government worker furloughs.

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Where Are the Carriers?

9:39 AM, Aug 09, 2013

"When word of a crisis breaks out in Washington, it's no accident that
the first question that comes to everyone's lips is: 'Where's the nearest carrier?'"
(President Bill Clinton, March 12, 1993, aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt)   

Twenty years later, it appears that the answer to that question will soon be, "The carriers are in mothballs." Rusting away. We can't afford them any longer."

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Defense Dept. Urges Furloughed Workers to Use ‘Free or Low-Cost’ Recreation During Time Off

12:17 PM, Jul 30, 2013

While furloughs of civilian employees of the Defense Department have not lived up to the pre-sequester billing, the Pentagon is doing what it can to ease the pain for those who will be taking involuntary time off.  The American Forces Press Service is reporting that the director of the Pentagon's Morale, Welfare and Recreation (WMR) program is urging furloughed civilians to tap into "fitness, recreational and educational services, often at no charge or for significantly less than one might pay just outside an installation’s gates."  The list of "free or low-cost" offerings is extensive:

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What $1 Billion Buys

In the Air Force.
1:25 PM, Jul 26, 2013

As the sequester sinks in and starts to hit the U.S. military, many have focused on the impact of unpaid furlough days for civilians, air shows grounded, and fireworks foregone.  

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A Hollow Reform Agenda

Jul 22, 2013

In 2012, the Department of Defense spent a total of $651 billion, including the costs of fighting in Afghanistan. According to the budget plan submitted by the White House a few months ago, projected 2014 spending will be $547 billion. If, as seems nearly inevitable, the “sequestration” provision of the Budget Control Act is triggered, that figure will fall below $500 billion, a loss of more than 20 percent in just two years.

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The Plague of Locusts Has Been Canceled

9:09 AM, Jul 01, 2013

Remember how the sequester was supposed to ravage the landscape?  The automatic spending cuts would, we were told, cause all manner of pain and suffering – inconvenience, even – as David A. Fahrenthold & Lisa Rein of the Washington Post report, we were warned:

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'Imagine What Our Economy Would Be Doing If Not For #GOPSequester'

8:09 AM, Jun 07, 2013

Democratic National Committee communications director Brad Woodhouse blamed the latest jobs report on the sequester and the Republicans:

175k jobs added is a solid number. Imagine what our economy would be doing if not for #GOPSequester, GOP refusal to make needed investments

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And the Bad News Is?

7:31 AM, May 30, 2013

It becomes more and more difficult to find the bad news about the sequester.  Unless, that is, you are in the Pentagon and trying to figure out how to keep the Marine Corps fully equipped and trained and up to strength.

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Protecting Icons

10:48 AM, May 28, 2013

[G]ood news for our employees, good news for our visitors as we start the summer season this Memorial Day Weekend, and good news for the security of our nation’s icons -- the places that the dedicated men and women of the U.S. Park Police protect every day.” 

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For $221k, July 4th Fireworks Show on National Mall in Washington Will Go On

6:27 AM, May 21, 2013

The show will go on.  Sequestration may have cost Washington D.C. tourists a chance to tour the White House, but the Independence Day fireworks will go off as planned.  A contract was awarded yesterday to Garden State Fireworks of Millington, NJ for $221,819.77.  The listing for bids on the typically business-like website contained this somewhat colorful solicitation:

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Veterans Administration Spends $378K on Signs for Civil War-Era Cemeteries

10:43 AM, May 20, 2013

Last week, a contract totaling more than $378,000 was awarded to develop and manufacture signs for Civil War-era cemeteries, including "18 unique interpretive signs for Confederate lots."  The contract was awarded by Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

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Furloughed Federal Workers Offered Sequester Deal of '30% Off the Regular Greens Fee'

"Furloughed to Fairways."
3:21 PM, Apr 30, 2013

Furloughed federal employees who like to play golf are in luck. There's a deal waiting for them, courtesy of the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority.

"Thousands of area federal employees will be furloughed on certain days between April and September this year as a result of the Federal Sequester.  In response, the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority (NVRPA) is offering a special deal for those furloughed federal employees who enjoy the outdoors and a good round of golf," the group writes in a press release, announcing its sequester deal.

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'I Can't Do It'

Apr 22, 2013

After several minutes of badgering from Sen. John McCain at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on April 9, Admiral Samuel Locklear admitted that the combination of regularly scheduled defense budget cuts and the “sequestration” provision of the current budget law meant that “in the near term .  .  . we’re not going to be able to provide the force levels” needed in the Pacific, where Locklear is the top U.S. commander. “The answer to your question,” he admitted to McCain, “is that I can’t do it.”

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Obama Golfs—Third Weekend in a Row

11:59 AM, Apr 13, 2013

For the third weekend in a row, President Obama is hitting the links. CBS's Mark Knoller reports on Twitter:


On a mild Spring day in DC, Pres Obama is playing a round of golf at Andrews. Third Saturday in a row.

— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) April 13, 2013


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DNC Chair Asks for Special Treatment for Staff During Sequester

7:12 AM, Apr 11, 2013

Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz made a special request of the United States Capitol Police for her staff members to be treated well during sequester:

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U.S. Embassy in Macedonia Hosts Fashion Show

11:49 AM, Apr 09, 2013

Last week, the U.S. embassy in Macedonia hosted a fashion show "with a goal of supporting Macedonia’s economic development, the fashion and textile sectors, and youth entrepreneurship."

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Feds Sign $6M Helicopter Contract for 'Wild Horse and Burro'

6:46 AM, Apr 02, 2013

As the sequester bore down on Washington, the dire warnings from the Obama administration gave the impression that wild horses couldn't drag another dime out of the treasury for a whole host of vital government services. Aircraft carrier refueling, the Head Start program, and White House tours were among the high profile victims.

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Podcast: Obama's Bad Sequester Calculus

Could it change public opinion on big government?
3:04 PM, Apr 01, 2013

THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with senior writer Stephen F. Hayes on President Obama's bad sequester calculus. Hosted by Michael Graham.

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The dismantling of the Navy.
Apr 01, 2013


When they agreed to President Obama’s 2011 budget proposal that is responsible for the current sequester, Republicans expected that the nation’s concern and respect for the military would help to prevent the cuts in defense spending that would occur if agreement to reduce the deficit were not reached. They were wrong. And it couldn’t have come at a worse time.

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