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American Public Ready to Repeal Sequestration

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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Association of the U.S. Army is pleased that a new poll shows 73 percent of Americans believe sequestration should be lifted.

               “We have been beating this drum as hard as we can, warning sequestration puts our national security at risk and makes defense planning in an already difficult world even harder,” said retired Army Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, President and CEO of AUSA. “The American people understand sequestration is a terrible idea. We just need the Congress and the White House to do something about it.”

               “Congress has gone home for the year, without acting to take the threat of sequestration in 2016 off the table. When lawmakers return in January, we hope this is one of their top priorities,” Sullivan said.

               Support for lifting sequestration comes in a poll from Beyond the Beltway Insights Initiative, which asked questions about budget priorities as part of a larger survey about economic policies. Results were generally upbeat about the economy, with 45 percent of those surveyed saying they expected their family would be better off in the next five years, 42 percent saying they’d be about the same and only 13 percent predicting they would be worse off economically.

               On sequestration, there was bipartisan support for getting rid of the budget-cutting mechanism. Seventy-seven percent of Republicans, 72 percent of Democrats and 72 percent of Independents supported lifting sequestration in some form.

               The poll shows there was no consensus on how to do this. Forty-three percent said Congress could repeal sequestration for all federal programs, while 30 percent says sequestration should be repealed only for the military.  Democrats and independents were more likely to support repeal of sequestration for everyone, which Republicans were more likely to support a military-only reversal of sequestration.

               The House and Senate will be controlled by Republicans in 2015, and the chairmen of the House and Senate armed services committees have both vowed to make repealing sequestration for military programs a top priority.