U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued the following statement today after the Senate unanimously passed legislation that he originally co-authored with Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Thune (R-SD). The Senators' Sequestration Transparency Act (H.R. 5872), which also passed the House recently by a nearly unanimous vote of 414-2, will now be sent to the President for his signature:
"If the sequester is not re-organized, defense spending--which makes up just one-sixth of the federal budget--will have to absorb half of the planned cuts, on top of the $487 billion in defense cuts already in place over the next decade. Meanwhile, some of the largest non-defense expenditures are totally exempt from any cuts whatsoever. I'm glad that Congress has been nearly unanimous in its recognition that the Obama Administration needs to reveal how it would move forward with such enormous defense cuts, which the President's own Defense Secretary said would be 'disastrous for our national defense.'"
Sessions and Thune's legislation would require the Office of Management and Budget, within 30 days of enactment, to provide Congress and the American people with a report about how it plans to implement the automatic spending cuts required by the Budget Control Act (BCA). Despite repeated requests from Members of Congress from both parties, the Obama Administration has thus far refused to explain how it will move forward with the $109 billion in cuts scheduled to take effect on January 2, 2013, half of which will fall on the Defense Department. The planned cuts are in addition to the $487 billion in 10-year defense cuts that were already included in the BCA.
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