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Confronted By Furloughed EPA Worker, Ryan Edits Out His Responsibility For The Sequester

Posted by on May. 3, 2013 at 10:37 PM
  • 4 Replies

Confronted By Furloughed EPA Worker, Ryan Edits Out His Responsibility For The Sequester

RACINE, WI — At a town hall meeting on Wednesday, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) was confronted by one of the more than 1 million federal workers affected by across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration.

David Novak, who works for the Environmental Protection Agency in Wisconsin, confronted Ryan over the impact the sequester is having: For Novak and hundreds of thousands of federal employees, it’s meant shorter hours and less pay. “I’ve already lost $6,000 in pay. I’ve got another 47 hours to lose,” he said. “You’re taking away our pay.”

Ryan’s response to Novak reinvented his long standing position on budget cuts. Not only did Ryan disavow any responsibility for helping create the sequester, he also omitted how his budget plan similarly shrinks the EPA:

This was is something the president has done through the Budget Control Act. We didn’t like it so we passed two bills to replace it. Twice. I passed a bill twice. I passed a bill in December that said instead of doing the sequester, here’s how the government should cut to pay for it. They rejected it. Then this last March we passed a bill funding the government and giving the executive branch the authority and flexibility on top to implement the sequester.

The EPA chose to implement it this way to affect you as you described. The Department of Transportation, they chose — chose, I’m using this word intentionally — they chose to furlough air traffic controllers when they could have cut other [inaudible]. They slated the Kenosha/Janesville airport for closure when they had the authority by Congress, signed into law.

Watch it:



Although he now blames President Obama, Ryan was a key Republican involved in creating the sequester in the first place. Congress passed the Budget Control Act in response to Republican demands for spending cuts without new revenue in exchange for raising the debt ceiling, which Ryan fully supported. The sequester’s broad cuts to social programs and defense spending were meant to motivate the Super Committee to reach a deficit reduction deal, but none was reached. All along, Republicans have refused additional revenue to reduce the deficit and Ryan even bragged about the law, calling the law “a victory for those committed to controlling government spending.”

But Ryan included another omission. In his 2014 budget, the House Budget chair calls for deep budget cuts to the EPA as well, which would severely handicap its oversight of the environment and public health. Ryan’s budget also incorporates the sequester in practically all non-defense spending.

When ThinkProgress spoke to Novak afterward, the military veteran said he “agreed with what he came back with, that there were bills proposed that would take care of this, but it’s still unfair.” “The job’s not getting done,” he said. I work with the public. I can’t go out and work with the public.”


by on May. 3, 2013 at 10:37 PM
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Replies (1-4):
grandmab125
by Platinum Member on May. 4, 2013 at 12:57 AM

 Lord, you need to give it a rest, and stop guzzling all of that kool-aid.

Carpy
by Platinum Member on May. 4, 2013 at 2:59 AM
1 mom liked this

Thinkprogress.  I don't think she gets any news from a reputable site. 

Quoting grandmab125:

 Lord, you need to give it a rest, and stop guzzling all of that kool-aid.


SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on May. 4, 2013 at 3:29 AM


Hello - Paul Ryan was not even involved in the sequester on the Gang of Eight negotiating the debt ceiling crisis during the summer of 2011, 1 year and 8 months ago. Please get your facts straight.

Why are you so afraid to admit the truth? - which has been confirmed by Obama and Jay Carney - that the sequester was Obama's idea. Then the Senate and the House came to agreement on it, and it was signed by Obama. The sequester was never supposed to happen -  except that Obama tried to strong arm House Republicans out of the very debt ceiling negotiation everyone had agreed to, and squeeze more taxes and no spending cuts out of them.  O tried to use brinksmanship, and over and over blame Congressional Republicans for the fallout, of what was actually his fault. Didn't work.

You really need to educate yourself about the facts. Opinion is subjective, but the truth is objective. You are speaking out about lies as if they were the truth. 


* See "The Price of Politics," by Bob Woodward, 2012, an exhaustive investigative report on the debt ceiling crisis.

JoJoBean8
by Silver Member on May. 4, 2013 at 9:47 PM

eye rolling

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