Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, released the following statement upon reviewing the White House report on the expected effects of sequestration on defense and non-defense programs as required by the Sequestration Transparency Act.
“On a day when many Americans are feeling anxiety as they watch violent protests directed towards the United States and see American flags burned, as Iran inches ever closer to attaining a nuclear weapon, when they see news that China is increasing its military capabilities at an unprecedented rate, this administration is sending the wrong message to our warfighters, our veterans, our allies and our foes. Most alarming for our warfighters, the report confirms that sequestration ‘would result in a reduction in readiness of many non-deployed units, delays in investments in new equipment and facilities, cutbacks in equipment repairs, declines in military research and development efforts, and reductions in base services for military families.’
It is time for the President to get out of campaign mode and exercise leadership if we’re committed to addressing the mounting challenges to our national security. The House of Representatives has passed a plan to replace sequestration and while those plans may not be perfect, they are a starting point for negotiation. It is way past overdue for the Senate to pass a plan so we can sit down at a conference table and come to an agreement. We cannot find common ground if we cannot find a starting point.”
Congressman Forbes voted against the Budget Control Act (S.365) in 2011, which among other measures, approved the looming 10-year, $600 billion, across-the board, automatic spending cuts to the defense budget, which will go into effect on January 2, 2013, if no action is taken.