Over the weekend the White House prepared a list of what states stand to lose if the sequester hits.
The reports details the consequences for popular areas of government like public health, education and research. It’s part of a broader public relations offensive to pressure Republicans to drop their opposition to raising revenue as part of a deal to avoid what leaders of both parties agree would be devastating consequences if the cuts go through.
The top lines: This year alone, across the country, 70,000 children would lose access to head start; 2,100 fewer food inspections could occur; as many as 12,000 scientists and students would be hit by cuts to research and innovation; up to 373,000 mentally ill adults and children would go untreated, and small businesses may see $900 million in reduced loan guarantees.
Security and law enforcement would also be hit. The White House estimates that the FBI could lose over 1,000 federal agents; customs and border patrol would effectively lose some 5,000 employees; and both the Federal Aviation Administration and Transportation Security Administration would have to furlough most of their workers.
Scroll through the list and see what they say about your state. Here’s Florida’s.
Teachers and Schools: Florida will lose approximately $54.5 million in funding for primary and secondary education, putting around 750 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition about 95,000 fewer students would be served and approximately130 fewer schools would receive funding.
- Education for Children with Disabilities: In addition, Florida will lose approximately $31.1 million in funds for about 380 teachers, aides, and staff who help children with disabilities.
Protections for Clean Air and Clean Water: Florida would lose about $5.2 million in environmental funding to ensure clean water and air quality, as well as prevent pollution from pesticides and hazardous waste. In addition, Florida could lose another $1.1 million in grants for fish and wildlife protection.
They can talk about the sequestration in general terms about the deficit and spending, but as Charlie Pierce points out, that kind of talk doesn’t get outside the Beltway. It’s the little things that matter and have the impact when it hits home on the local news between Ellen and Jeopardy!
Every laid-off defense worker is a story. Every closed national park is a story, weeping children live at 5:30 with Sarah, or Jennifer, or Russell from Our News Team discreetly herding the distraught tot into camera range. Local columnists can find easy columns in closed Head Start classrooms. Empty airport terminals make for outstanding video. This was a serious act of pre-emption aimed at using everything that’s maudlin and provincial about local TV news. You wanted the White House to play tough.
Tip O’Neill was right: all politics is local.