Va. congressional delegation calls on colleagues to stop sequester

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by Mike Gooding, 13News

WVEC.com

Posted on March 1, 2013 at 6:13 PM

Updated Friday, Mar 1 at 6:21 PM

NORFOLK-- Members of the Hampton Roads congressional delegation say they're disgusted sequestration has come to this point and most are calling on their colleagues to keep working to find common ground on reducing the debt and stop the budget cuts.

Common ground has been hard to find since the Budget Control Act passed in August, 2011. Democrats want the wealthy to pay higher taxes while Republicans want to reduce entitlement spending.

"It's not being averted as we speak. We have to stay at the table and continue to work to find a deal," said Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine.

"Yes, we need to do cuts, but targeted cuts, not this sequestration that was set up to be the stupidest of all possible options, which now has become a reality," said Virginia other senator, Mark Warner.

From the cancelled deployment of the USS Truman to the possible layoffs at BAE Systems and Newport News Shipbuilding, the cuts have already created problems in Hampton Roads. 

"I'm fighting for us, our region, for Congress and the president to do what's right and replace sequester with something far wiser.  That's what I'm working on," said Rep. Scott Rigell of Virginia's Second District.

Rigell wants both parties to come back to the table. "Really we shouldn't be out of session unless and until we resolve this," said Rigell.

But Third District Democrat Bobby Scott thinks the two sides are simply too far apart ideologically to accomplish anything, and he blames the GOP.

"The Republicans have said they will not consider bills with new revenues so it's cuts alone. You can't do $1.2 trillion. The number is too large. The cuts are too severe, so here's just nothing to talk about," said Scott.

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