Sen. Warren calls automatic budget cuts ‘just plain dumb’
As originally appearing in Boston Herald

By Marie Szaniszlo

Sen. Elizabeth Warren called the automatic cuts in federal spending slated to take effect Friday “just plain dumb,” but the Bay State’s newly minted, but still senior, senator said it’s largely up to congressional leaders to reach a compromise.

“The sequester negotiations are mostly with the leadership,” she told reporters this morning before addressing the New England Council. “We all talk, but it’s not happening with every Republican reaching out to every Democrat. Right now, the White House, the leaders in the Senate and the House of Representatives are in negotiations.”

Warren called the $85 billion in automatic cuts set to kick in Friday a “blunt instrument.”

“We’re out there trying to make clear this means children kicked out of Head Start programs. This means teachers that are potentially laid off. This means fewer air traffic controllers,” she said. “It means here in Massachusetts fewer dollars going into research. That may sound way off and not really important, but that means jobs right here in Massachusetts. It means cuts in the defense industry, not smart cuts, cuts we ought to be making, getting rid of fat,” she said. “It just means blunt, across-the-board cuts. It’s just an irresponsible way.”

Warren said she hopes congressional leaders will pick up on the president’s offer to cut spending 50 percent by closing corporate loopholes, and 50 percent by making targeted cuts, including in agricultural subsidies and military spending.

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