–White House Budget Office: Cuts ‘Never Intended To Be Implemented’
–Cuts To Have ‘Devastating Impact’ On Defense, Domestic Programs
–Administration Still Wants ‘Balanced’ Deal To Replace Sequestration
–Deficit Deal Could Replace ‘All Abritrary Cuts’ That Are Required

By John Shaw

WASHINGTON (MNI) – The White House’s Office of Management and
Budget said Friday that if the $110 billion in across-the-board spending
cuts for the 2013 fiscal year go forward they will compel deep cuts in
more than a thousand defense and domestic spending programs.

In a report mandated by Congress, OMB said the sequestration
process would have a “deeply destructive impact” on virtually all parts
of the federal budget.

The 394-page OMB report outlines cuts of up to 10% in 1,200 federal
government programs. Overall, the sequestration process requires $55
billion in domestic cuts and $55 billion in defense cuts for FY’13.

The OMB report said the threat of across-the-board spending cuts
was developed last year to forge a bipartisan budget agreement, adding
the actual cuts were “never intended to be implemented.”

The OMB report said specific cuts for FY’13 are “dictated by a
detailed statutory scheme” that allows for very limited flexibility by
the administration.

The OMB report said the sequestration process would have a
“devastating impact” on key programs in both the defense and domestic
portions of the federal budget.

The sequestration process, the OMB said, is “not a substitute” for
a responsible and balanced deficit reduction package. Such a package
could be used to replace “all the arbitrary cuts” that are required by
the sequestration process.

At a briefing, senior administration officials said policymakers
should spend time and energy trying to finds ways of replace the

“Sequestration is a blunt and indiscriminate instrument,” one
official said, adding the administration “does not support” implementing
the cuts, but wants to find a deficit reduction alternative to avoid
having to make them.

“They (the threatened across-the-board spending cuts) were
intended to drive both sides to a consensus,” the official said.

The White House report was mandated by Congress to spell out how
individual programs will be cut if the $110 billion in across-the-board
spending cuts in FY’13 go forward.

** MNI Washington Bureau: (202) 371-2121 **

[TOPICS: M$U$$$,MFU$$$,MCU$$$]