WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) released the following statement after the Senate voted on two plans to replace the process called "sequestration," which will enact across-the-board cuts to many federal programs tomorrow:
"People in Delaware and across the nation know we've got to get away from stop-and-go government, from crisis governing, from constant fiscal cliffs. That's what the sequester is. We – Congress and the President – forced this situation upon our country by failing to compromise, failing to address our deep, fundamental fiscal challenges, and most of all, by failing to lead. Instead, we're enacting indiscriminate cuts without asking whether they'll hurt our economy or undermine the basic responsibilities of government. And by failing to resolve the sequester, we're yet again kicking the can down the road for another few weeks, when we'll need to approve funding in order to avert a government shutdown. We can't keep living under the pending threat of all these bad things happening. It hurts our economy and erodes confidence that our leaders can get things done. We need a comprehensive plan. I favor an approach that does three key things. First, we have to raise revenues, through reducing tax expenditures and eliminating costly loopholes and through raising revenues to the levels we had when we saw four balanced budgets in a row in the late 1990s. Second, we need entitlement reform that doesn't savage older people or poor people and keeps these programs strong for the long haul. And third, we should look in every nook and cranny of the federal government, every program, every agency, and ask, 'How can we get a better result for less money?' If we do those three things, we can finally demonstrate our capacity to get our country back on the right fiscal track. Until we do, we're only addressing symptoms, not the disease."