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Stopping Sequester Cuts Should Be Number One Priority In Washington Right Now!

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard 3Every day that goes by brings us one step closer to the Sequestration cuts that nobody wants. Yet nobody can seem to stop them though many are trying.  Everyone agrees that allowing sequestration to happen would send America down the wrong path and would result in a loss of millions of jobs in both the private and public sectors.

“Prof. Stephen Fuller of George Mason University concluding that sequestration budget cuts would cost 1.05 million jobs from spending reductions at domestic agencies and 1.09 million jobs from Pentagon spending.” (GovExec)
(emphasis added)

These cuts will hit us right here in New Hampshire.  This would mean drastic cuts to the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.  Recently Senator Jeanne Shaheen and Senator Collins released a statment on how these cuts would effect the workers at the PNS.

“The measures the Navy announced include a civilian hiring freeze, cutting temporary workers at shipyards and base operating support facilities, reduced funding for critical repairs, and a possible 22-day furlough of civilian Naval employees. As Shaheen and Collins say in their letter, these cuts “would have severe ramifications for many critical defense facilities, including our own Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.”

“The Navy’s announcement underscores just how unacceptable automatic sequestration cuts are not only to our national security but to our economy as well.  We need a comprehensive plan to rein in our debt and deficits but not in a way that puts our vital national security and economic interests at risk.  I’m disappointed that we missed an opportunity to work in this manner last year during the fiscal cliff negotiations but am hopeful that moving forward we can take steps to avoid the kinds of actions that the Navy announced,” Senator Shaheen said.

Senator Shaheen spoke to the Senate Armed Services Committee reaffirming the need for bipartisan support to end the Sequestration cuts. Shaheen raised particular concern over the impact sequestration could have on the country’s industrial base, citing the potential devastation on New Hampshire small businesses that constitute a core part of the national defense industrial base.

“When it comes to our budget we need a comprehensive approach that is fair and balanced with respect to cuts and new revenues,” Shaheen added. “I will do everything I can to be flexible about that and to be willing to look at all the options that we have to get a solution because this is not just about our military readiness and this country’s national security, it’s also about the future of the economy in this country.”

Senator Shaheen has been very vocal in her opposition to the Sequestration cuts and the inability of both the US House and Senate to pass a long term budget solution to this problem.

“The fact we have not [come up with a long-term solution] means each and every one of us in Congress should take a second look at what our jobs are in this body,” Shaheen said.

Unfortunately many of the GOP Congressional members are suddenly singing a different tune when it comes to Sequestration.  Durning the election season many of the GOP were against the cuts and now they seem to be throwing their hands in the air as if they cannot stop them.  Some have even suggested that these cuts are the best thing to get our national debt under control.

Both sides need to come together and stop these automatic cuts that will send our economy into a tailspin.  Millions of middle class Americans would be forced out of their jobs or forced to take almost a month off without pay.

Even a short term solution may be to late to stop job losses in the private sector.

“Even without sequestration, the country is slowly backing away from long-term investments that make it the global leader.” — Wes Bush, CEO and president of Northrop Grumman

All industries rely on the strength and security the Federal Government provides.  They need to know that their funding will continue or at least know what their funding will be over the next few years to plan for their own future.

Millions of jobs are on the line and we elected you to Congress to help create new jobs not destroy the good middle class jobs we already have.

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About Matt Murray

Matt Murray is the creator and an author on the NH Labor News. He is a union member and advocate for labor and progressive politics. He also works with other unions and members to help spread our message. Follow him on Twitter @NHLabor_News
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