The Obama White House Is Already Backpedaling On Obama’s Debate Sequestration Comments

- October 23, 2012


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Fox News' Bret Baier: "So, Apparently 'Will Not Happen' Has Become 'Should Not Happen.'" FOX NEWS' BRET BAIER: "Megyn you mentioned the sequester earlier, the massive cut to the Defense Department, the Pentagon, that's coming up on January 2. The president said tonight that the sequester will not happen. That was a key moment. And it did make news. Well now, the White House, the campaign is back-peddling. David Plouffe saying in the Spin Room just behind you, pressed on this, he said repeatedly to reporters, everyone in Washington agrees the sequester quote should not happen. And asked again, and he said it should not happen. So apparently 'will not happen' has become 'should not happen.' We'll see what happens with that." (Fox News' "On The Record," 10/22/12)

But The Original Idea For Sequestration Came From Obama's White House

Politico Fact Check: “In Fact, The Idea May Have Come In Part From Obama’s Current Chief Of Staff, Jack Lew.” “In fact, the idea may have come in part from Obama’s current chief of staff, Jack Lew.” “In fact, the idea may have come in part from Obama’s current chief of staff, Jack Lew. The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward reported in his book ‘The Price of Politics’ that Lew, then-Office of Management and Budget director, and White House Legislative Affairs Director Rob Nabors broached the idea of a defense sequester as a threat to Republicans during negotiations over raising the debt ceiling.” (Josh Gerstein and Darren Samuelsohn, “Fact-Checking The Third Presidential Debate,” Politico, 10/22/12)

White House: "We Have An Idea For The Trigger. … Sequestration." "At 2:30 p.m. Lew and Nabors went to the Senate to meet with Reid and his chief of staff, David Krone. 'We have an idea for the trigger,' Lew said. 'What's the idea?' Reid asked skeptically. 'Sequestration.' Reid bent down and put his head between his knees, almost as if he were going to throw up or was having a heart attack. He sat back up and looked at the ceiling. 'A couple of weeks ago,' he said, 'my staff said to me that there is one more possible' enforcement mechanism: sequestration. He said he told them, 'Get the hell out of here. That's insane. The White House surely will come up with a plan that will save the day. And you come to me with sequestration?' Well, it could work, Lew and Nabors explained. What would the impact be? They would design it so that half the threatened cuts would be from the Defense Department. 'I like that,' Reid said. 'That's good. It doesn't touch Medicaid or Medicare, does it?' It actually does touch Medicare, they replied. 'How does it touch Medicare?' It depends, they said. There's versions with 2 percent cuts, and there's versions with 4 percent cuts." (Bob Woodward, The Price Of Politics, 2012, pp. 326)

The Obama Administration Proposed That Half Of The Cuts In The Sequestration Trigger Should Come From The Defense Budget. "Lew, Nabors, Sperling and Bruce Reed, Biden's chief of staff, had initially decided to propose using language from the 1985 Gramm-Rudman-Hollings deficit reduction law as the model for the trigger. It seemed tough enough to apply to the current situation. It would require a sequester with half the cuts from Defense, and the other half from domestic programs. There would be no chance the Republicans would want to pull the trigger and allow the sequester to force massive cuts to Defense." (Bob Woodward, The Price Of Politics, 2012, p. 341)

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