By Jonathan Morgenstein
On New Year’s Eve, Democrats and Republicans came together to pass the American Taxpayer Relief Act. However, this agreement simply delayed the now-infamous sequestration for three months. If Congress cannot forge an agreement by March, automatic budget cuts of nearly $110billion per year for the next 10years could devastate Virginia’s economy.
Sequestration would hit the Old Dominion hardest because half of the cuts come from defense. Virginians are rightfully proud of our long military history. At Yorktown, our Continental Army secured the final defeat of British forces. Today, more Virginians serve on active duty than those of any other state in the country, except California. We are home to much of the nation’s civilian defense infrastructure. Sequestration’s budget cuts would disproportionately — close to 10 percent of all jobs lost nationwide — impact our commonwealth.
Morgenstein served two tours as a Marine Corps officer in Iraq and as a civilian in the Office of the secretary of defense. He is a fellow with the Truman National Security Project and a nonresident fellow at the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy.