Five things you need to know about the sequester
The sequester splits spending cuts 50-50 between defense and non-defense programs.
It's due to go into effect this Friday, March 1, if Congress doesn’t reach a compromise first.
Non-defense programs already get a smaller piece of the pie.
Defense programs take up well over 50 percent of the discretionary budget:
The sequester’s bite will have a greater impact on the smaller pieces.
Non-defense programs just went through a round of cuts in 2010–12.
More cuts to nutrition programs for women and children, Head Start programs, and housing assistance will devastate communities that are already underfunded. (Expand the infographic above to see how.)
The Pentagon budget has more than doubled since 1998.
It is full of waste (like the F-35, the "plane that ate the national budget"), and can easily sustain cuts. In fact, the Pentagon had $100 billion leftover from last year’s budget that it didn't manage to spend!
The sequester is not a crisis for the Pentagon:
Our message—to invest in people, not the Pentagon—is gaining some traction.
The sequester represents the first cuts to the Pentagon budget in over a decade.
Through March 1 and beyond, we’re reinforcing this message on Capitol Hill and in lawmakers’ inboxes—and in your local newspapers and communities. Sign up for our Wage Peace list to get updates and action alerts by email.
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Sept. 2012 program update call with Joseph Gerson and Aura Kanegis