Washington D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member, Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09), released the following statement in response to the implementation of sequestration:
“Today marks the beginning of the implementation of across the board cuts through sequestration. This is a disappointing development that should have been avoided. As I have said for months, this is not how we should govern or address our deficit issues.
“Congress has a responsibility to the American people to address our fiscal issues in a balanced and effective way. Without a doubt, the federal government has a deficit problem. Over the last ten years, we have dramatically cut taxes and increased spending. This is unsustainable. We need to take steps to address our long-term budget problems, but cuts through sequestration are the wrong way to achieve that goal.
“We need a holistic and balanced approach that addresses mandatory spending and raises new revenues while, at the same time, responsibly reducing discretionary spending over the long-term. Deep and indiscriminate cuts in the short -term could push our economy back into a recession and damage national security and important programs.
“This week, I introduced a bill designed to eliminate sequestration and implement an alternative spending plan that is designed to promote greater certainty in our economy, the Department of Defense, and the entire federal government. This plan would ensure that discretionary spending, and the economy, are no longer held hostage while Congress debates the larger revenue increases and mandatory spending changes necessary to move towards fiscal responsibility.
“It is my hope that a deal is reached before the cuts go too deep. I remain committed to working with my colleagues and constituents to resolve these devastating cuts and find a long-term solution to our fiscal issues.”