Congressional Republicans are preparing their first counteroffer to President Barack Obama to avert the across-the-board cuts of the looming sequester, a House GOP aide confirmed this morning. Politico, which first reported the news, said that top Republican members of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees are formulating a proposal that would delay the sequester for a year by slashing the federal workforce by 10 per cent. The House GOP aide said this would be done solely through attrition, a gradual reduction in the federal workforce.
The Republican plan will be led by Rep. Buck McKeon, the chair of the House Armed Services Committee, and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.). It’s unlikely to gain much traction, however, as McKeon has been pushing for a similar proposal for more than a year now.
On Tuesday, President Barack Obama spoke publicly for the first time in the renewed debate over whether and how to avert the sequester’s cuts, which are expected to amount to $1.2 trillion over 10 years — including $85.3 billion in fiscal year 2013 alone.
In his press conference, Obama called for a “balanced mix” of spending cuts and tax reform for a short-term fix to avert the sequester. McKeon, among other Republicans including House Speaker John Boehner, balked at the President’s offer.
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