Senator: Sequestration beats no entitlement cuts plan

As negotiations continue over the fiscal cliff and the Pentagon continues to face a serious threat to its budget, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, a leading hawk, said Tuesday that he's ready to see the across-the-board cuts happen if it means averting "a Budget Control Act 2” in which Congress just kicks the can again.

"No one has been more outspoken about the dangers of sequestration,” Graham said, “but this is my biggest fear — that the day you begin to pull the trigger on sequestration, it’ll be used to create tax revenue legislation that doesn’t make sense," he told reporters Tuesday. "It’ll be used as an excuse to avoid doing entitlement reform, which is long overdue."

Graham said the threat of sequester slashing $500 billion from the Pentagon budget wouldn't "push [him] into a deal that doesn't reform entitlements."

"We don't need a Budget Control Act 2 where we punt everything down the road. Let’s just deal with the problems of the country," he said.

Graham's comments to reporters came as President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner trade new offers on the fiscal cliff deal, some of the first with provisions that might save defense.

The latest White House offer included a provision for "turning off" sequestration for some areas of federal spending — though it didn't detail what would be exempt and what would not — and included $100 billion in additional Pentagon cuts. That proposal would delay, but not totally avert, the cuts that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has warned would be devastating for the department and the nation's defenses.

Boehner said Tuesday morning that he hasn’t yet determined how his plan B proposal to avert the fiscal cliff would handle sequestration and other major sticking points, including the Alternative Minimum Tax and the estate tax.

Graham said that for as important as he believes it is to protect the Pentagon, a larger deal on taxes and spending would trump even that.

"I say go for it,” he said. “I don't want sequestration to be used for us to create a deal ... that just makes bad policy on the revenue side," Graham said. "Let it happen; the goal of sequestration was to get a guy like me to just agree to any deal on spending or revenue or punt the ball on entitlements. I'm just not going to do that. "  

Posted to: Federal Government Military News Politico

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Taxes will be raised.

The only open question is how much and on whom. Republicans appear to recognize this, and in any event were whipped by the electorate.

What I mostly fear is that He-Who-Must-Never-Be-Criticized has absolutely no corresponding recognition that spending must be cut -- dramatically.

Including a suggestion for even more stimulus in his last proposal is indicative of a president who is either oblivious to basic budgeting concepts or, perhaps more likely, just doesn't care.

Hands off social security It adds nothing to the deficit or debt



Same nonsense

Simply lifting the cap on SS income would probably have to result in a lifting of the cap on yearly retirement payout. SS is a defined benefit. Medicare is not. They could uncap the excise tax on the employer, but doing so on the individual puts the program's constitutionality into question. Again.

(And, yes, I do pay attention. As someone in his mid-thirties,I never expected to see my full payout. These days, I'm teetering on the edge of disability.)

I think there's ways to deal with it that nobody is looking at. If a politician wanted to employ me, or if enough people think I'd be election-worthy, I'll share. Otherwise, maybe it's something I can sell in book form. I can't take one of those jobs the Boomers think I should have.

if we agree to $100b in DOD cuts, it better include

cutting every entitlement program not enumerated in the constitution as an enumerated responsibility of the Fed govt.

Effectively every safety net program created in the 20th century would have to be cut. Since no one is willing to do that, this offer is dead before it was uttered.

What it does show is Obama is a fool and Boenherd is a bigger fool if he takes it to the House floor. Both could care less about the future of the country and both only care about their political careers. Two dang good reasons to not trust either man or anyone that supports them.

9% approval and they still haven't figured it out? And we keep reelecting this fools? I guess we kinda deserve what we get? A weak military and a nanny state.

PLEASE, Across the board Cuts: Starve the Beast

Equal cuts across the board is the way to do. There is plenty of pork to be cut. Starve The Beast.

One Day...

We will all pay attention to this and worry about it when it MATTERS. WORRYING and THINKING about it makes you look old and flabby. Yep. It does.

The Federal Government has a 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 50 year plan.

They refuse to share it with the Citizenry.

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