News / USA

Obama Appeals to 'Caucus of Common Sense' to Stop Sequester

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about the sequester after a meeting with congressional leaders at the White House, March 1, 2013.
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about the sequester after a meeting with congressional leaders at the White House, March 1, 2013.
VOA News
U.S. President Barack Obama is reaching out to what he calls the "caucus of common sense" to stop the $85 billion in government spending cuts that took effect Saturday.

Obama said in his weekly address that there are Republicans who want to end certain tax breaks for the rich and Democrats who want to reform big government programs like Social Security and Medicare.  So, he says he will continue to reach out to both parties to find a compromise.

Watch President Obama's weekly address:



In the Republican response, Congresswoman McMorris Rodgers repeated Republican objection to raising taxes. She said the debate should focus on smarter spending cuts.

Watch weekly Republican address:



President Obama signed the spending cuts into law Friday. He was legally obligated to sign the order even if he did not want to.

The drastic cuts, known as a sequester, were meant to force Congress and the White House to reach a budget deal so they would never actually take effect.

Millions of Americans could be facing tough choices as the effects of the government cuts are gradually felt.

Some federal agencies have instituted a hiring freeze and cut spending on various projects to avoid worker furloughs.

Economists say poor families and the unemployed will lose benefits. Stores could see food shortages because of fewer meat inspections. There could also be delays in shipping and a lower demand for imported goods, which may hurt U.S. trading partners.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says budget uncertainty puts the Pentagon's ability to carry out its missions at risk. Among other moves, Hagel said the Navy will have to ground planes, the Air Force will cut flying hours, and the Army will cut back on training.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ed Mays from: Brick NJ
March 02, 2013 7:58 PM
We need alot of spending cuts and the Pentagon is a good place to begin. And let`s knock off the nonsense where members of Congress can add attachments of favorite projects onto an unrelated bill.

by: TonyG from: Az
March 02, 2013 9:19 AM
No surprise . . . the "Narcissus" has blamed the Republications. Yahoo!! Look in the mirror Obama . . . how about the other $6T you have wasted in the last 4 years . . . we are not better off . . . unless you are on welfare, unemployment, etc. Take ownership of something . . . not your golf score. Of course we won't believe you if you did divulge the score. Honestly who cares!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs