Virginians. Hampton Roadsians. Please, please pay attention to this. We are on the verge of losing 200,000 jobs here in Virginia if the automatic spending cuts go through. I consider this serious when I hear, “[Sequestration] would cripple Virginia’s economy if it happens.”
Here is a transcript of a Sunday morning interview with Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia with Meet the Press host David Gregory:
So there’s so many areas that are contentious between Republicans in the White House right now. And chief among them is this “sequester” word, this dirty word in Washington. It means automatic spending cuts. $1.2 trillion over ten years could begin in a matter of weeks, with $85 billion in automatic cuts.
And here’s the real question, to my mind, which is do you really want this, as a Republican leader? I mean look at the impact it would have in your state alone. The Associated Press wrote about this, this week. I’ll put it up on the screen. “Sequestration,” again, another word for “automatic spending cuts,” “today a political football would cripple Virginia’s economy if it happens. Proportionally, no state would suffer more than Virginia. The commonwealth would lose more than 130,000 jobs from defense cuts alone, more than any other state.”
There’s been some studies being done on this in the state. Not only is Virginia home to the Pentagon, the world’s largest U.S. Navy base, in Norfolk, it’s also a hub for Navy defense contractors, such as aircraft carrier built a Newport new ship building. Non-defense budget cuts would eliminate another 71,000-plus jobs in Virginia. So the impact, over 200,000 jobs, second only to California. You can’t want this automatic spending cut to go forward.
REP. ERIC CANTOR:
You know, clearly, this is not, David, the best way to go about trying to control spending. And we have demonstrated in the House for two separate occasions. One of the bills that we put across the floor that passed, I was the sponsor of, for exactly that reason. These are indiscriminate cuts. We can do a lot better. And what I hope to be able to hear from the president in the State of the Union is he wants to join us in trying to affect much smarter cuts in spending so that we don’t have to have them.