US President Barack Obama has called on Congress to put an end to the “reckless” and “dumb” sequester budget cut plan and to replace it with a “smarter” one.
The US president on Saturday called on the legislature to adopt the budget plan he has proposed, saying it aims to " replace the next several years of these dumb cuts with smarter cuts; reforms our tax code to close wasteful special interest loopholes; and invests in things like education, research, and manufacturing that will create new jobs right now. ” Obama’s statement comes a day after Congress approved a bill putting furloughed air traffic controllers back to work. After the sequestration took effect on March 1, some USD 85 billion in automatic budget cuts to federal spending caused major problems for air traffic controllers. As a result of employee furloughs due to sequestration, hundreds of traffic air controllers were off the job and some 1,200 flights were delayed on Monday.
“This week, the sequester hurt travelers, who were stuck for hours in airports and on planes, and rightly frustrated by it. And, maybe because they fly home each weekend, the members of Congress who insisted these cuts take hold finally realized that they actually apply to them too, " Obama said on Saturday.
"Republicans claimed victory when the sequester first took effect, and now they've decided it was a bad idea all along…” he added. “I hope members of Congress will find the same sense of urgency and bipartisan cooperation to help the families still in the crosshairs of these cuts.” The sequester cuts were designed in 2011. Obama had previously blamed the Republicans for refusing to prevent the “dumb” spending cuts, and for voting to “let the entire burden of deficit reduction fall squarely on the middle class.”