The effects of the sequester were overstated, but GOP hawks (and Obama) want to cancel it anyway

Congress didn’t act to stop the sequester. The reductions took effect. And what happened? Not much—and certainly not the terrible toll that the sequester’s opponents warned of. The federal furloughs that agencies complained about so loudly, for example, have turned out to be far less extensive than predicted. “Most major departments have reduced furlough days, or eliminated them altogether,” reports Government Executive …

“The most significant example of furlough reductions has been the Defense Department. The Pentagon originally planned to furlough all 750,000 of its civilian employees for 22 days. It then used reprogramming to trim that number to 11 days, and more recently — through a series of cost-cutting measures and inter-service transfer of funds — reduced the days of unpaid leave to six. The furloughs are now estimated to affect about 650,000 Defense civilians. …”

The reality of sequestration’s non-disastrous effects doesn’t seem to have set in with the GOP’s hawks, however. Sen. John McCain, a vocal opponent of the sequester, has aligned himself with the White House in pushing Senate Republicans to negotiate a budget deal that ends sequestration—largely in hopes of reversing the defense cuts. President Obama, meanwhile, has vowed to continue fighting the sequester too.