- Posted February 26, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Sequester All About Politics - NOT Economics
We need to understand and be clear that the upcoming sequester has nothing to do with economics or fixing the fiscal mess we have languished in for years. It is politics in its most blatant form. Unfortunately, it seems that most of us are buying into the idea that our elected officials have the economy on their collective minds on the issue of the mandatory across-the-board cuts set to take effect on March 1.
Medicare and Social Security along with interest payments on the national debt are exempt.
When the plan was hatched, passed and signed into law about a year and a half ago, it was a political gamble by both President Barack Obama and his Democratic colleagues in the Senate and House of Representatives that such a move would never see fruition. It was also a political gamble by Republican leadership and rank-and-file members of Congress that accepting the plan would also not be seen to implementation. But both sides did so with an eye on the 2012 general election.
Now here we are within days of the sequestration law taking full effect. Both sides are trying to blame the other again for political reasons. Both sides are making bets the other side will blink before the midnight hour.
Reality, both sides hope the plan now takes its toll...but for purely political reasons.
In 2012 the President was able to campaign on the sequester to show he was all for cutting the over-the-top spending in Washington. He even vowed to veto any legislation that attempted to curb or avert the sequestration from happening. Republicans campaigned that the sequester was their ace in the hole which would force Democrats in Washington to stop their evil, free-spending ways.
Both sides used the sequester to keep their positions of strength in the Halls of Power - the White House and the Congress.
Today it is all about the 2014 midterm elections.
The President and his fellow Democrats see the sequester as the best way to put the onus on Republicans and return the House to their side in 2014. The gamble is that the voting public will not have forgotten in 19 months that it was the obstructionist Republicans who caused all the financial hardship and harm to the economy. The President also sees this as the best way to have both chambers of Congress to press on and cement his legacy during the critical last two lame duck years of his presidency.
For Republicans, they are hoping to maximize on the idea this was the only way to get any spending cuts from the Big Spender in the Oval Office and force Democrats to come to grips with overhauling entitlements. Republican incumbents see the sequester as the only way to stave off a revolt from more extreme members of the base during 2014 primaries. Republicans find the sequester a way to keep those House seats and Senate positions up for renewal.
No one in the Capitol from the President to the leaders in Congress are giving any real thought to the economic realities or to long-term impact of fiscal irrresponsibility. All that matters to our elected officials is how sequester will play on November 4, 2014.
Ignore all the "sky is falling" rhetoric. Ignore all the "this is the best we could get" on spending cuts talk.
The economy will survive. Our elected officials know this. Why bother with doing the people's work when there's an election in 19 months?
From the Cornfield, sequester is most likely to occur come Friday. Don't fall into the trap from either side that the other side is to blame.
Both sides set up this crisis. Both sides want this crisis. Both sides want sequester to happen.
It's all about politics, not economics.