“The sequestration will not happen,” except if it does

posted at 10:01 am on November 6, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

Seeking to reassure the defense community (for instance, the many Northern Virginia defense bureaucrats and contractors who could decide the direction of the swingy commonwealth’s 13 electoral votes) before the election, President Obama flatly declared that “the sequestration will not happen” during the final presidential debate. (The president also claimed that “the sequester is not something I’ve proposed,” trying instead to pin the blame for the idea of the deeply unpopular half-a-trillion-dollar defense-budget slashing on Congress, but that doesn’t seem to be true, either).

Those were some mighty bold words, considering that the issue has divided Washington for months and that Obama has said he’ll veto any fiscal-cliff solution that doesn’t include his proposed tax hikes, to which Republicans in turn have argued that they will not agree. While some interested parties are betting on a deferral, there are still others in the defense community, as Politico points out, that aren’t at all certain that Congress will solve the problem, and especially not in the lame-duck Congress prior to the January deadline:

…Now it appears that no matter who wins the White House, the lame-duck Congress is unlikely to have the last word.

That’s the consensus of defense watchers across Washington, several of whom told POLITICO they even expect sequestration to take effect, at least for the first few weeks after its official start date, Jan. 2. …

If Obama wins, Democrats could try to improve their negotiating position by allowing sequestration to take effect and letting the Bush-era tax cuts expire — forcing Republicans into a corner on two top GOP priorities. …

If Romney wins, Republicans also could improve their negotiating position by waiting until January — once they take control of the White House — to haggle with their Democratic counterparts.

Politico goes on to argue that many think the sequestration actually going into effect wouldn’t be imminently “devastating,” as the effects wouldn’t all be immediate and it would give whatever Congress today’s election gives us more time to work out a deal. The point is, however, that the sequestration would go into effect, and while the federal government decides to take its sweet time bargaining over the cuts, the lingering uncertainty over the final scenario negatively effects both military policy and a whole heap of jobs.

But, I suppose it’s easy to be so glib and blithely declare that something that could most definitely happen, simply will not happen, when your reelection is at stake, no matter how adversely it may effect military operations or people’s livelihoods. It’s whatever.


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Oh, it will happen. Maybe. Well, I don’t know but…..

they lie on November 6, 2012 at 10:04 AM

your re election will not happen either

Slade73 on November 6, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Sequestration: spending 275% of what you can afford, instead of 280%.

Dextrous on November 6, 2012 at 10:07 AM

Sequestration: proof that the Democrats just don’t care about the military…

Khun Joe on November 6, 2012 at 10:10 AM

OT: Ohio: Early Vote Down 4.1% In Blue Counties; Up 14.4% In Red

faraway on November 6, 2012 at 10:10 AM

New Black Panther thugs reportedly back at the polls in Philly; Update: Confirmed; Video added
http://twitchy.com/2012/11/06/new-black-panther-thugs-reportedly-back-at-the-polls-in-philly/

Update: Reports that the New Black Panthers are also in Ohio are coming in. Further reports indicate that former Navy SEALs are on their way to Philadelphia, Pa. and Ohio in order to guard against this voter intimidation.

Southern by choice22 on November 6, 2012 at 10:14 AM

Well, in “fairness”, he’s been lying through his teeth for the last four years. Last night he wept on national TV whilst contemplating his possible loss.

This man has no shame. What’s one more lie.

RedCrow on November 6, 2012 at 10:15 AM

OT: Romney ahead in Oiho by 92,000 votes

Landslide

faraway on November 6, 2012 at 10:16 AM

It will happen. Especially if the rat-eared wonder is voted out of office.

But while on the subject, if you live in VA-11 please get out there and vote Connolly out of office too. The bastard has declared that his challenger’s 25 years in the military didn’t qualify him to have a place in Congress. That he (Connolly) had put in the sweat equity by his time in Congress and on the Fairfax Co. Board of Supervisors. He must pay for his arrogance.

Happy Nomad on November 6, 2012 at 10:18 AM

Buck Ofama, and to blazes with the entire Democrat Party!

Liam on November 6, 2012 at 10:21 AM

Southern by choice22 on November 6, 2012 at 10:14 AM

This is a good catch. Thanks.
Probably, Ed is already on it.

RedCrow on November 6, 2012 at 10:24 AM

Let me put it this way – sequestration is happening, and unless Dingy Harry Reid is no longer majority leader (actual or acting), it won’t be reversed.

Steve Eggleston on November 6, 2012 at 10:26 AM

Southern by choice22 on November 6, 2012 at 10:14 AM

Also, supposedly, ex-Navy SEALS are en-route to NBPP intimidation sites in Cleveland and PA.

RedCrow on November 6, 2012 at 10:27 AM

Being overwhelmingly tilted towards military cuts stings, and it stings that this all came about because Congress couldn’t be adults about the debt ceiling, but the cuts themselves aren’t that big, and we may need to take this pill now if we want to take a principled stance against other spending cuts in the future.

theperfecteconomist on November 6, 2012 at 10:31 AM

OT: Romney ahead in Oiho by 92,000 votes

Landslide

faraway on November 6, 2012 at 10:16 AM

Ed just put up an update…the 92,000 vote lead info was not correct…

but the landslide part is. :-)

lynncgb on November 6, 2012 at 10:32 AM

Or maybe carving out an exemption here works–I just don’t see how it helps in the long run.

theperfecteconomist on November 6, 2012 at 10:32 AM

Well, in “fairness”, he’s been lying through his teeth for the last four years. Last night he wept on national TV whilst contemplating his possible loss.

RedCrow on November 6, 2012 at 10:15 AM

Oh crap! I missed that.

I would pay money to see that.

Sweet schadenfreude.

Gunlock Bill on November 6, 2012 at 10:33 AM

And I, for one, welcome our new Sequester overlords. I’d like to
remind them that as a blogging personality, I can be helpful
in rounding up others to toil in their underground sugar caves.

Haiku Guy on November 6, 2012 at 10:37 AM

but the cuts themselves aren’t that big, and we may need to take this pill now if we want to take a principled stance against other spending cuts in the future.

theperfecteconomist on November 6, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Sorry but it is never good public policy to arbitrarily cut budgets with no basis behind the amount to be cut. Having a discussion about level of defense spending is one thing. This insanity is something else. And BTW, there are a whole lot of contractors whose livelihood are hanging in the balance.

Happy Nomad on November 6, 2012 at 10:37 AM

…I don’t care about ANYTHING except the VOTE TODAY!
.
.
oh!…and…

NO POLL TROLL…!!!

KOOLAID2 on November 6, 2012 at 10:39 AM

You know that President Obama blamed the coming seq. crunch on congress. I guess a family friend signed his name on the bill.

Or did you miss that buck passing?

IlikedAUH2O on November 6, 2012 at 10:39 AM

It won’t happen?

Currently it happens TO BE THE LAW.

But then, Barry has never been concerned about THE LAW.

GarandFan on November 6, 2012 at 10:41 AM

the fact that the debt team couldn’t even rationally deal with the issues of the day and leave it up to pure idiocy, how do they get away with this.

every American should know that our military is going to be cut into big time while useless programs get a small haircut

we better go back to 2006 + inflation spending levels

audiotom on November 6, 2012 at 10:43 AM

Hmm, I guess if these cuts go through, Dems will just say in future budget debates, “hey, we tried cutting spending, and look at the mess it created,” so maybe I should look at this more politically.

theperfecteconomist on November 6, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Gunlock Bill on November 6, 2012 at 10:33 AM

I, for one, don’t think it has anything to do with a deep love of the USA.

Sorry, but I’ll never believe that.

RedCrow on November 6, 2012 at 10:50 AM

Seeking to reassure the defense community (for instance, the many Northern Virginia defense bureaucrats and contractors who could decide the direction of the swingy commonwealth’s 13 electoral votes) before the election, President Obama flatly declared that “the sequestration will not happen” during the final presidential debate

Where have I heard such resoluteness before?

Paging Bart Stupak – how did that “no Fed funding for abortion” EO pan out?

AH_C on November 6, 2012 at 11:06 AM

It will happen. Reid wants it and will not stop it. Obama probably wants it too. I pulled all my investments out of stocks 2 weeks ago in anticipation of Wall Street’s reaction to it. I’ll be in a buying mood when I think it has hit bottom.

stvnscott on November 6, 2012 at 11:08 AM

Dingy Harry wouldn’t walk across the isle to get a drink of water if his life depended on it. Amazing that one individual, voted into office by 50.24%, holds up his tin cup against a man who built his entire life on his own merit.

Molonlabe2004 on November 6, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Bob Woodward’s “The Price of Politics,” Page 215 (July 12, 2011):
“A trigger would lock in our commitment,” [White House national economic council director Gene] Sperling explained. “Even though we disagree on the composition of how to get to the cuts, it would lock us in. The form of the automatic sequester would punish both sides. We’d have to September to avert any sequester” — a legal obligation to make spending cuts.

“Then we could use a medium or big deal to force tax reform,” Obama said optimistically.

“If this is a trigger for tax reform,” [House speaker John] Boehner said, “this could be worth discussing. But as a budget tool, it’s too complicated. I’m very nervous about this.”

“This would be an enforcement mechanism,” Obama said.

Obama Nov 21, 2011: “I will veto ANY attempt to prevent the sequester.”

Obama Oct 22, 2012: “First of all, the sequester is not something that I’ve proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed. It will not happen.”

J_Crater on February 7, 2013 at 5:59 PM