White House Report Details Effects of Automatic Budget Cuts
Army operations and maintenance would lose nearly $7 billion next year, and the Navy more than $4 billion under a looming series of automatic cuts in federal spending. Educational achievement and special-education programs would be shaved by $2.3 billion. Medicare payments to hospitals would fall by $5.6 billion.
And, particularly relevant at a moment when world attention is focused on the continuing attacks on United States embassies and consulates abroad, diplomatic programs and embassy security would lose $1.2 billion.
These are among the findings in a new 394-page report by the White House that was delivered Friday to Congress, detailing line by line what will happen next year if Washington fails to act to head off about $100 billion in military and domestic spending cuts scheduled to begin Jan. 2. The Obama administration had been reluctant to specify the impact of sequestration, as the automatic, across-the-board spending reduction is called. But once forced to do so by Congress, the White House budget office did not scrimp on the details.
“As the administration has made clear, no amount of planning can mitigate the effect of these cuts,” the report states. “Sequestration is a blunt and indiscriminate instrument. It is not the responsible way for our nation to achieve deficit reduction.”