Bobby Jindal, the Republican governor of Louisiana, has turned criticisms back to President Barack Obama over the impending sequester.
Speaking to reporters at a Republican Governors Association news conference following a meeting with Obama this week, Jindal said, “I think he’s trying to scare the American people,” reported The Washington Post on Monday, February 25.
Democrats and Republicans have until Friday to avoid the automatic spending cuts that would affect education, public health assistance, and military spending, among other areas.
Jindal’s state would take a hit of at least $75 million in education and military readiness alone, according to numbers released from the White House.
Generally, the Republican position has been for the overhaul of spending with certain exceptions to military funding and other areas, while opposing taxes that would run in addition of recent increases the President won in the debate over what to do with the expiration of the so-called “Bush Tax Cuts.”
Democrats continue to look for more revenues and some spending cuts, though Republican opposition doesn’t feel the concessions that are there would affect the country’s $16 trillion-and-growing national debt.
This was the position Jindal took when he said to reporters on Monday, “It has become clear to me that this president, this administration, has an insatiable appetite for new revenues.”
Jindal said the governors, in their meeting with Obama, wanted “flexibility” in where the cuts were made, but the President balked.
“He didn’t jump at that,” Jindal added.
Danny Kanner, spokesperson for the Democratic Governors Association, pointed blame to Republicans and had some words of his own for Republican governors.
“Republican governors like to say they’re different than Republican politicians in Washington, but it’s all talk,” Kanner said. “They refuse to urge congressional Republicans to embrace a balanced approach or end special tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans in order to stop job-killing automatic spending cuts, demonstrating that they have no interest in a bipartisan agreement.”
Criticisms from Jindal, however, have not been reserved exclusively for Obama and the Democratic party. In January 2013, following the defeat of Republican candidate Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election, Jindal issued a warning to the GOP.
“We must stop being the stupid party,” Jindal said. “We must stop looking backward … We must stop insulting the intelligence of voters.”
Do you believe Jindal is right that President Obama is trying to “scare the American people” in the sequester debate? Should states be allowed to determine where spending cuts are made in the event of sequestration?