San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith, who represents much of Hays County, released this statement on the automatic budget cuts that took effect on Friday:

“I am disappointed that President Obama allowed sequester cuts to take effect. His decision places partisan politics above the best interests of the American people. The cuts are regrettable, but were avoidable. House Republicans twice passed legislation that would have avoided sequestration cuts.

“The Senate has not passed a single bill to avoid the cuts. And despite the fact that the sequester was the president’s idea, he hasn’t proposed any specific spending cuts to help avert sequestration. Instead, the president demands more tax hikes to continue funding his administration’s spending spree.

“But the problem isn’t that Americans are paying too little in taxes, it’s that the government spends too much. President Obama campaigned on a promise that he would cut the deficit in half. Instead, he has doubled it. The federal government now borrows 40 cents on every dollar it spends. No family, no community, no country can sustain that kind of excessive spending. It is the road to bankruptcy.

“Sequestration is a symptom of a much larger problem – out of control government spending that threatens to bankrupt America. More tax hikes are not the solution. Only serious spending cuts that reduce the national debt will help save our nation’s fiscal future.”

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9 thoughts on “Lamar Smith on ‘regrettable,‘ ‘avoidable’ sequestration

  1. Mr. Smith and many like minded members of Congress are very much a huge part of the problem. Smith’s earmarks are very much a part of he deficit. Everytime he and other members take care of a friend the rest of the country suffers. Yes, spending is out of control but it is simply wrong for Congressman Smith not to accept his role in creating the problem in the many years he has served his cronies in Congress.

  2. If you ignore the predictably partisan commentary in Lamar’s first two paragraphs and focus on what he says in the last two instead, you’ll see that he has hit the nail squarely on the head.

    No private business, no household, no individual could sustain itself for more than a few months if they used the government’s fiscal policy. Only our government seems to think that there is no need to actually design and adhere to a budget that balances spending with receipts.

    Tax “the rich” at 100% of their income, and you STILL wouldn’t make a dent in our deficit without serious cuts to spending programs – including the Democrats’ “golden cows” – entitlement programs.

    Our government was never intended to be the vehicle through which our poor are fed, our citizens’ retirements and health care expenses are funded, or our insurance is purchased. Looks like we’re now going to learn that the hard way.

  3. Mr. Smith seems to forget that the Republican-led House jumped on the sequestration idea when it was floated by the WH. But in hindsight, I think all parties now recognize it as a spectacularly bad plan.

    The lesson here is that even in the face of consequences that were designed to be awful and unthinkable, our lawmakers in DC are flat-out incapable of compromise. As it became clear that no solution would be offered — eventually, Speaker John Boehner simply announced he was done negotiating — the GOP started claiming that Mr. Obama was overblowing the ill effects of sequester cuts, knowing full well that once the cuts took place, they’d blame the President for any pain felt.

    This is where we are in DC. The government spends too much money — it’s hard to argue that one — but there is zero political will to make the difficult choices that will stop the bleeding. Everyone wants cuts to Medicare, but no one wants cuts to his mother’s Medicare. So whose mom gets Medicare Minus, and who will make that call?

  4. We need a spending freeze across the board. We should only continue with essential spending. After all, if it’s not absolutely necessary, why are we spending money on it? Our children are drowning in debt before they are even born…

  5. The spending spree is over, LBJs failed unfunded programs top of the cut list. Medicaid is a joke, 60% increase in disability claims by federal employees, and you never have to look for a job anymore, just ride unemployment until the national bank is bankrupted. This USA community is not very well organized, and, I thought that was the existing presidents claim to fame :-) So much for that failed fantasy…# 1 problem, other than the incompetant leader at 1600 Penn Ave., Harry Reid! jlb

  6. Wow….some people really have no idea what they are talking about.

  7. Mr. Smith fails to acknowledge that the two bills passed by the House were filibustered by his Republican colleagues in the Senate, preventing even a vote on them. He also fails to admit that the whole sequester idea was the brain child of two Republicans, Sens. Graham and Rudman, and a Democrat, Sen. Hollings, who authored a bill that set it up as an option. All of you who are crying wolf about the debt, and comparing it to a business or a family’s budget simply miss the point. A national budget has nothing in common with a family or even a business budget. (What business or family can print its own money?) The fact is that Medicare and Social Security do NOT contribute to the deficit. They are, at this point, self sustaining. Our problem today is not too much spending. In fact, trying to come out of a recession, the fed needs to spend more. We have a revenue problem that began under Reagan and only got better under Clinton and went into the toilet under Bush. When Mr. Smith talks about LBJ’s unfunded programs he conveniently forgets a much closer example: GWB’s two unfunded wars and massive tax cuts. If you want to see what austerity does to a country, take a trip to Spain or Greece. (Both of those countries, BTW, play the national past time of dodging taxes, much like some of our own wealthy citizens.)

  8. Bob,

    Did you know that under Bush in 2007, the U.S. had the most revenue in history?

  9. Rep. Smith, a public challenge for you and all the other Representatives. Go thru all your legislation and cut just one piece of pork. Just one. Then let’s see what the budget looks like.

    Or is in not pork if it’s spent in your district?

    Personally, as an American, I can do without a program on several hundred.

    Same goes for Sen. Cruz, and all the other Senators; as I know he tracks the goings on in the Mercury.

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