In the aftermath of President Barack Obama’s two-day campaign swing through Virginia, Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell was on CNN’s “State of the Union” program this morning with Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts.
Among other things, the two governors talked about the impact that automatic federal spending cuts will have on their states if Congress and the president fail to agree on a long-term deficit reduction package by the end of the year. The sequestration would include deep cuts in defense spending that could hurt Virginia’s economy. The National Association of Manufacturers estimates that Virginia could lose nearly 115,000 jobs in 2014 if the defense cuts occur.
“We’re very concerned about it,” McDonnell said before criticizing Congress and Obama.
“I think the president needs to lead on this, get Congress back and do something about sequestration,” said McDonnell, who spoke from Williamsburg, site of the National Governors Association annual meeting. “Look, we need to cut spending. We’re $16 trillion in debt, $5 trilion more because of the president’s lack of leadership, but we can’t do it this way and sacrifice the United States military.”
Patrick defended Obama and said Republicans in Congress are responsible for the standoff for refusing to consider tax increases.
By the way, “State of the Union” host Candy Crowley will be the moderator for Saturday’s debate between Virginia U.S. Senate candidates George Allen and Tim Kaine at The Homestead resort in Hot Springs.