Rick Scott Tells Obama, Congress to ‘Stop Playing Chicken’ on Sequestration

By: Sunshine State News | Posted: February 26, 2013 3:55 AM
Barack Obama and Rick Scott

President Barack Obama and Gov. Rick Scott

Gov. Rick Scott voiced his deep concern Monday about the sequestration cuts that are set to begin Friday, calling the stalemate on negotiations in Washington, D.C., an “elementary school game of ‘chicken.’”

“Sequestration means the Obama administration and Congress failed to do their job to manage the budget,” Scott said. “As thousands of Floridians lose their jobs, the Obama administration and Congress are getting paid for not doing theirs. That’s just wrong.”

Florida is one of the leading states for the defense industry in the nation, with three unified combatant commands, 20 major Air Force and Navy installations, and annually contributes more than $73.4 billion to the economy. The state also is home to more than 750,000 defense-industry jobs.

“The impacts on Florida’s military installations and defense industries will be severe under the meat hammer of sequestration,” Scott said. "Our immediate concerns include dramatic reductions to our National Guard, which threaten our ability to respond to wildfires this spring and hurricanes this summer. Now is the time for leadership. It is critical for all national leaders to find a way forward that will not have unwarranted, unnecessary impacts on both our economic and our national security.”

Meanwhile, as President Barack Obama is slated to visit a military community in Virginia Tuesday, House Republican leaders blasted the president for his campaign tactics and urged him to stay in D.C. to figure out how to avert the cuts.

Answering questions from the media Monday, House Speaker John Boehner and other top GOP members said it was time for Obama to "stop campaigning" and work with Congress to stop the $85 billion in cuts that will take effect March 1.

The impact of the cuts to Florida’s defense industry is estimated to include 40,000 to 80,000 in job losses and the reduction of nearly $1 billion in defense spending across Florida. The Florida National Guard also estimates an annual impact of $27.2 million and nearly 1,000 employees furloughed for 20 percent of the remaining year. That would equal more than $7 million in lost wages.

With the nation’s top state leaders visiting D.C. this week for the National Governors Association (NGA) winter meeting, the talk quickly turned to sequestration, as the states’ head officials fear ultimately being the ones left to clean up the mess.

“I think there’s a lack of leadership, period," Republican Gov. Gary Herbert, of Utah, told Politico. "And there’s enough lack of leadership blame to go around. The president needs to step up with his proposals. [House] Speaker Boehner needs to come to the table with his proposals. And what’s happening with [Senate Majority Leader Harry] Reid? I mean, they haven’t done a budget there for four years.”

Meeting with the NGA at the White House Monday, Obama said it was time to do some governing.

Tags: News, Politics

Comments (6)

12:15AM FEB 27TH 2013
Rick Scott your days are numbered, you have done more harm to the citizens of this great State and have oppressed hard working families.

It was noted that the Emergency Unemployment for Tier Four that was approved by Obama Administration was rejected by you. You are out of touch with the working class that was laid off and cannot find work. where are the 700,000 jobs?
1:23PM FEB 26TH 2013
Well, somebody should tell the rightwingnut Chromedome that he did nothing but "play chicken" with the Affordable Care Act's provisions affecting insurance exchanges and Medicaid ... and HE'S the one who "chickened out" in the end!

He's the biggest and most incompetent fool that ever occupied this state's governor's mansion! And ... he should have been a felon!
11:59AM FEB 26TH 2013
America is fat - you have to cut it - including failing teachers.
1:25PM FEB 26TH 2013
Right! And if you'll notice ... most of the "fat"cats are Republicans ... especially in the most bassackward of the southern states!
Marie Dealing
7:12AM FEB 26TH 2013
HA HA HA And this comes out of the mouth of a "PINK SLIP GOV" who gave thousands of Teachers their pink slip!!! His "reelection NOT " is close!
1:30PM FEB 26TH 2013
This fool should have gone to prison like a few of his underlings did resulting from Chromedome's company fraudulently ripping off Medicaid and Medicare to the tune of a few billion dollars!

And, in claiming he "didn't know", Chromedome admits that he was woefully incompetent (but probably complicit) as the CEO of that company, Columbia Health Care.

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