Time has come, and nearly gone, for resolution
What have members of Congress and the Obama administration been doing for the past year and a half?
The president, a third of U.S. senators and all representatives had time to run for office. But the election was over in November. They have had nearly four months to resolve the sequester issue.
The sequester never was meant to happen. It was just a disciplinary tactic to ensure our national leaders developed a thoughtful, deliberate plan to reduce the federal budget deficit.
Yet just a few days before across-the-board reductions in discretionary spending are to occur, there is no agreement on such a plan.
And it appears little thought and effort has been involved in applying the automatic spending cuts.
Ohio, according to information received from the White House, would see reductions of $25.1 million in education spending and another $22 million for students with disabilities. Yet instead of figuring out how to provide the same amount of service with less money, plans call for just doing less.
For example, an estimated 2,500 children from low-income families would be excluded from Head Start programs. That’s about 5 percent of the total number of children now served.
Why not work on ways to use remaining funds more efficiently? Why didn’t federal bureaucrats plan on this possibility over the last 18 months?
When families and businesses have less to spend, they find ways to stretch the money they do have. But how often does our federal government have less to spend?
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said it’s time to find smarter ways to reduce the deficit. Actually, that time began ticking away when the sequester deal was reached in August 2011.