(Extensions of Remarks - April 26, 2013)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E571]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []



                         HON. JAMES R. LANGEVIN

                            of rhode island

                    in the house of representatives

                         Friday, April 26, 2013

  Mr. LANGEVIN. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to express my deep 
disappointment that Congress has wasted yet another opportunity to be 
rid of sequestration for FY13. The most important action we can take to 
provide for the long term health of our nation is getting people back 
to work, and ensuring that those who are employed, stay employed. This 
cannot happen with sequestration in force, yet House Republicans 
continue to risk our delicate economic recovery by allowing this 
disastrous policy to continue. Since April of 2011, we have cut $2.4 
trillion from the budget over the next ten years--with nearly three 
dollars in spending cuts for every dollar of revenue.
  In February, Democrats introduced legislation, which I cosponsored, 
to avert sequestration in a balanced way, through closing tax loopholes 
and targeted spending cuts. Ever since, Democrats have tried to bring 
this proposal up for a vote, with Republican leadership blocking every 
  Every day, I hear stories from Rhode Islanders about the effects of 
sequestration on their lives and livelihoods. Some consequences, like 
flight delays, are more visible than others. But the impacts are just 
as real, and often much more devastating, for the laid-off workers 
whose extended unemployment insurance has been reduced, for our kids 
who won't get a spot in Head Start, for the low-income families who may 
lose their housing vouchers, for the seniors who won't be receiving 
Meals on Wheels, and for our teachers who may lose their jobs. 
Piecemeal legislation--and playing favorites--is not the answer. We 
cannot simply react to the loudest voices or the most well connected; 
sequestration is damaging to every segment of our community.
  I am heartened to see that after months of denying the consequences 
of sequestration, my colleagues on the other side of the aisle have 
finally woken up to the real, damaging effects to our constituents and 
to our economy. But we seek public office to represent the interests of 
all of our constituents, and to give a voice to those who can't always 
speak for themselves. We cannot afford any more carve-outs--there are 
too many in our communities whose problems are just as great, but whose 
voices don't carry as far. I urge my Republican colleagues to join us 
in finding a comprehensive solution to sequestration so that all of 
those who are suffering under this policy will know they have been