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Warner, Kaine react to budget agreement
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
U.S. Sens. Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, both Virginia Democrats, express-ed some concerns about the budget agreement announced Tuesday, but both praised the cooperation behind the deal.
Warner said: “My hope is this compromise allows us to step away from the irrational harm of sequestration, which hits Virginia harder than any other state. This is a productive step forward that avoids another shutdown and allows the government to operate with more predictability over the short term. I have some concerns about the impact on the federal workforce and our military retirees, which is another reason why we need to tackle the larger and more important issues of tax and entitlement reforms to fix our balance sheet over the long term.”
Kaine also released a statement: “I’m disappointed that reductions in the cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for military retirees and cuts to federal employee benefits were included. But the deal goes a long way toward alleviating the most harmful effects of sequestration next year — cuts that have disproportionately impacted federal employees and the defense community — and restoring basic economic certainty to businesses and families across the commonwealth. It also ensures we won’t suffer another damaging government shutdown next month that would have resulted in more negative consequences for federal employees.
“The two-year, bipartisan agreement will relieve $63 billion of sequester cuts for 2014 and 2015. It will also avert additional defense cuts — including $20 billion in cuts that were set to take effect in January 2014 — and replace non-defense cuts over the next two years. ...
“While I’m still examining the details of the deal, I am pleased a spirit of compromise and cooperation prevailed.”