The White House today announced President Obama would participate in interviews with local television affiliates from across the country. Here are four questions the President should be asked about his sequester:
1. The House passed two bills to replace your sequester - one six weeks ago and one six months ago. Now you claim to have a plan to replace your sequester. Why aren’t you urging Senate Democrats to vote on your replacement plan?
• The House acted to replace President Obama’s sequester, passing bills on two occasions to replace the sequester with responsible spending cuts and reforms. The Democratic-controlled Senate did not consider either bill.
1. H.R. 5652, Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act
2. H.R. 6684, Spending Reduction Act of 2012
2. Should you call for higher taxes on hardworking Americans when Washington spends millions of tax dollars paying people to play video games?
• The National Science Foundation awarded $1.2 million to pay senior to play the video game “World of Warcraft,” to analyze the impact it had on their brain.
3. The Congressional Budget Office says the federal government will receive record revenues in 2013 yet we still face massive debt and deficits. Despite these nonpartisan facts, you continue to ask for higher taxes on hardworking Americans. Isn’t it time to focus on spending cuts?
• The Congressional Budget Office has projected the government will take in $2.7 trillion in revenues in 2013 – more revenue than it ever has before. (The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2013 to 2023, Congressional Budget Office, February 2013)
4. Last week, three top leaders in the Democratic Party insisted Washington doesn’t have a spending problem. Do you agree with leadership in your own party that Washington doesn’t have a spending problem?
• PELOSI: “It's almost a false argument to say we have a spending problem.”Nancy Pelosi kicked off the Democratic message on spending on Fox News Sunday by telling Chris Wallace, “It's almost a false argument to say we have a spending problem. We have a budget deficit problem that we have to address.” (Pelosi: We Don’t Have A Spending Problem, Fox News, February 10, 2013)
• HOYER: “Does the country have a spending problem? The country has a paying for problem.”House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said on Tuesday that he doesn’t believe Washington has a spending problem either. When asked point blank on CNBC’s Squawk Box this morning whether or not Washington has a spending problem, the minority whip refused to answer. (Hoyer: "The Country Has A Paying For Problem," Not A Spending Problem, Real Clear Politics, February 12, 2013)
• HARKIN: “Is it a spending problem? No.”At a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing today, Senator Harkin (D-IA) said, “I think, first of all, I want to disagree with those who say we have a spending problem, Everyone keeps saying we have a spending problem. And when they talk about that, it’s like there’s an assumption that somehow we as a nation are broke. We can't afford these things any longer. We’re too broke to invest in education and housing and things like that. Well look at it this way, we’re the richest nation in the history of the world. We are now the richest nation in the world. We have the highest per capita income of any major nation. That kind of begs the question, doesn’t it? If we’re so rich, why are we so broke?Is it a spending problem? No." (Harkin: No Spending Problem, and We're Not Broke, Weekly Standard, Daniel Halper, February 14, 2013)