Senate bill to change terms of sequestration
Republican sponsors speak out on 'Special Report'
- Duration 8:01
- Date Feb 26, 2013
Republican sponsors speak out on 'Special Report'
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-- are going to get into specifics of a new senate bill to dramatically potentially change the terms of the sequester.
Joining me are Republican sponsors -- Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.
And James -- off of Oklahoma -- thanks for being here senator and offers to you what is this bill.
Do the -- week.
And made a decision a month ago that if nothing happens on the sequestration if the president is successful.
-- getting all these cuts across the board my major concern is defense.
That we would use the same top line -- say.
All right chief -- the military.
Make decisions what can you do rather -- this straight pure cuts across the board that would be less damaging that they -- -- it -- it really their first response was.
Well we could do that if we didn't have to use live with the cuts.
But the numbers have been listening to do the same reductions same top line.
But we could within that make changes to make it less painful for military.
So that was it as a month ago and I talked to the chiefs at that time this India would you do that adamant in their did.
Both of defense and non disastrous senator.
That's right you know -- this government has doubled in size since 2000 spending has grown enormously.
We need the discipline of beginning to reduce spending and at least the rate of growth that's we're talking about here so.
I wanna make sure we get the spending cuts but I -- to do it in a smarter fashion.
And so what senator in -- I've agreed to do and we're working with other colleagues on a bill that would give the president some discretion to make.
The least disruptive cuts possible but you know in the three point six trillion dollar budget.
The funny a waste they can find it.
This is what we're calling transfer authority to give these -- of defense non defense that.
And present the administration the ability to move this morning around here's what Democrats are saying when asked about this possibility.
Let's assume the president was given.
I think the first place you would look at the defense authorization bill for good reason as I understand -- McCain and others have come out against this flexibility.
This gives the White House more power than they have now.
Brad anyone telling you that there are some easy off ramp here is not being straightforward -- That I -- to me sounds like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic instead -- trying to keep the -- from sinking.
And I don't think the problem is.
Rearranging the spending.
I think the problems is.
Avoiding -- 750000.
People losing their jobs.
What about that's well you know that's not true -- -- yeah I'm on the armed serves committee I'm the ranking minority.
And we spent a lot of time Senator McCain is right there and coming up priorities in coming up with a bill.
What our bill does is says you're gonna use the same guidelines as are in the NBA -- India a bill which is the defense bill.
And so we are using in this bill the all of the -- it has been done in so it's it's not that way at all.
In fact -- and that was it changed it took place is still somewhat of -- work in progress.
That -- did the bottom line is this threat.
We have our chiefs we have our military people who can take that same amount of money and do a lot better with it in that satisfies those who just want and the cuts.
And so I think it's -- best solution.
-- to me when we started this tonight we had a third chair ready for senator mansion.
Couldn't come -- there's a little pressure here are there -- Are -- Democrats who -- ready to sign on to this happened how does the democratic.
Position work on this.
I think the Democrats are divided.
And we're having discussions with a number of Democrats to recognize that you know when you have to cut spending probably makes sense -- cut in the least painful way.
Rather then doing some arbitrary cross aboard -- so I think we're making some progress says time will tell whether we get -- you have got to join us.
I just talked to.
The senator from West Virginia.
If -- he's very very receptive to this idea he -- to wait and see what it looks like and then after they wanna see what the Democrat plan -- first before they get committed to a Republican plan.
But you'll get you to Democrat senators from Virginia.
There's that huge losses would take place if you're just talking about cuts across the board that they can get in there and do and prioritize that.
To be much less painful.
How it wants to listen again to president today.
And and you heard some of -- but here's another -- from the president today in Virginia.
There are too many.
Republicans in congress right now who refuse to compromise even an -- when it comes to closing tax loopholes and special interest experts.
And that's what's holding things up right now.
And to me says that's a -- -- -- that I felt you know we'll throw obamacare dozens of tax increases on on hand and just about every American.
The end of the year a massive tax increase -- President Obama insists that on.
And now what do we hear more taxes he wants more taxes for more spending.
And we're non interest in that we need to spending discipline we can do it in a smarter fashion giving the president some flexibility that's what we're trying to accomplish.
And an officer of the Democrats -- -- sequester.
Replacement out of committee but they never moved it to the senate floor could they have passed that.
On the senate floor.
No I don't think so because I think if they hit it had been able to pass it it would have been on the senate floor and keep in mind they have control of what goes on the senate floor.
This thing every time I see the president talking about taxes all he talks about is increasing taxes that's what that can lead led off with.
We've got -- we don't have a tax problem we have a few high taxes now.
And we can do this this is a way into quite frankly think that a lot of spending that we otherwise couldn't -- we just want to do it in a smarter way.
How much pain is this going to call us if we get there and it looks like we're going to get there.
If you're bill doesn't work it looks like we're gonna get if we give it doesn't have to be painful week this we're talking about two and a half percent of a government that has grown by a 100%.
No I guess that's and we talked about that they're weak -- but -- collection you hear -- All that's been talked about from the White House in the administration how painful what's the reality.
I -- tea painful on the on the military part of the defense -- you heard -- Leon Panetta said he said it would be devastating first of all.
Under this president they've already made a cut a 400 -- 87 billion dollars over the next ten years.
This to be another wouldn't get played that they don't adopt what we're talking about another half trillion dollars.
-- -- half trillion dollars would still come out that'd be coming out of places where we can look at it from a military perspective and not just straight across the board.
It's how the sequester is implemented not necessarily the number which is what we're trying to expire -- -- that's exactly right mean because it's been roughly 2.3 percent out of yeah yeah I -- pot I should point out that that's.
Authorizing 2.3 percent some which -- spent over many years so it's really about 1% of all federal spending.
At does anyone really think that this government can't find 1% of its spending in savings last thing.
The next battle because this is how we've been operating lately is the continuing resolution.
Do you think -- be Republican unity on how to deal with funding the government.
I hope so I hope we agree that we're not gonna go a dime above the level it's already been established look we're running trillion dollar deficits we've got sixteen trillion dollars in -- this is totally unsustainable.
We've got to begin to get this under control.
And the CR -- you're talking about is it's addressed in this bill.
It used to allows us to go about it and make decisions we we we can live easily on what is out there that -- -- thing that makes -- different from domestic.
Is that this president has already cut -- half trillion dollars the defense bill and that's why that's my major concern because that's my area of interest.
Senators and often to -- thank you very much and we welcome senator mansion if so come on as well thank Richie thanks Brett.
What do you think Republicans Democrats will be able to come together to solve the -- and pass let me know on Twitter you can follow me at -- there.