Poll: 40 percent OK with government cuts

February 21, 2013 7:51:28 PM PST
Major cuts to federal spending are set to kick in on March 1, 2013. So the president and congressional Democrats are doing all they can to jumpstart a deal. They are trying to enlist the help of the American people for this.

They're not doing that well. A new poll out shows 40 percent of Americans are saying, "Let the cuts happen" in spite of the administration's full-court press.

Time is running out; there are just eight days until the spending cuts kick in. On Thursday the president called the Republican congressional leaders to talk about the $85 billion in cuts that will go into effect March 1st, if Congress fails to act.

"There's no other profession no other profession, no other industry where people wait until the 11th hour to solve these big problems," said President Barack Obama.

On Wednesday, in a series of interviews with news anchors including ABC7 News' Dan Ashley, the president pressed his message. The Pentagon said it will be forced to furlough most of its 800,000 civilian workforce for at least one day a week.

In Washington D.C. the CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association, Marion Blakey, testified that if civilian military support is cut, operation and maintenance systems will also be compromised.

"And that's exactly where the sequester hits and hits very hard," said Blakey.

The thinking here is that emphasizing cuts to the military will pressure Republicans into making a deal. However, a new poll out shows 40 percent of Americans saying "no" when asked if Congress should delay the cuts in order to try and find a compromise.

"You know you need to start somewhere and our defense budget is so enormous right now," said Ryan Wegner, a New York resident.

Turns out a lot of Americans think cutting the military's budget is a good place to start. However, when the secretary of transportation warned that sequester will also mean cutting back on air traffic controllers, which could increase the number of cancelled flights, Americans said that's where they might feel the pain.

Scientist Dan Nepsted told us it really shouldn't be a question of "Whose ox is getting gored?"

"I think the right question is this the way you adjust your budget with this draconian measure? Or do you do it with a planned way with a thoughtful process where you look at all possible ways of lowering spending and we're certainly not doing that," said Nepsted.

No. We're not and with just eight days left, it appears that the sequester cuts are going to hit, at least for a while.

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