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The PJ Tatler

Bridget Johnson


July 13, 2012 - 9:30 am

The House next week will consider a bill that would compel President Obama to detail what plan he has to face potentially catastrophic defense cuts.

Sequestration, the automatic cuts triggered by the failure of a bipartisan group to achieve a deficit-reduction agreement, would mean an additional $492 billion in cuts taking effect in January.

These reductions would lead to the smallest ground force since 1940, a fleet of fewer than 230 ships (the smallest since 1915), and the smallest tactical-fighter force in the history of the Air Force, according to the House Armed Services Committee.

The Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012 was introduced in May by John Thune (R-S.D.) in the Senate and by Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) in the House.

“If the president isn’t willing to work with Republicans to replace these harmful cuts, he should at least detail for the American people how his administration plans to implement them,” Hensarling said when the bill was introduced, adding that the legislation “requires the president to join a debate he continues to evade.”

Hensarling’s bill — which requires a report from the president to Congress within 30 days on discretionary appropriations and direct spending plans for all areas touched by sequestration — has 56 co-sponsors, including Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), who has been unsuccessfully fighting Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to bring legislation to the floor that would stop the deep cuts.

Here’s McKeon on Fox earlier this week about the looming sequester.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.
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