Survey: Sequester Hurting More Americans as Nation Faces Another Budget Battle

Monday, 29 Jul 2013 11:38 AM

By Michelle Smith

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As fall approaches, moving the nation toward another budget battle, the proportion of Americans who say they are feeling the effects from the sequester is increasing.

Of the 1,000 adults who participated in the NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, 22 percent claim they have been significantly affected by the nation's budget cuts. That's up from 16 percent surveyed in April, shortly after the sequester went into effect.

Digging deeper into the results, it appears the most vulnerable Americans are getting hit the hardest.

Editor's Note:
 
Economist Warns: ‘Money From Heaven a Path to Hell.’ See Evidence.

In April, 24 percent of the survey participants earning less than $30,000 reported negative effects from sequester. The latest poll reveals a rise to 31 percent of those in that income range.

The sequester is also making it more difficult for younger people to find work, claims NBC, noting that the unemployment rate among Americans aged 20 to 24 was 13.5 percent in June.

"In a time when we could have had more cash in the economy by having the government be a spender, be a customer to the economy, we didn't do that. In fact, we took more money out of the economy. For that reason, there's just less job opportunities for everybody entering the job market after college," said one outraged poll participant.

"It just decreased any opportunity of getting more work experience, learning a trade or skill on the job, while being able to support ourselves," the respondent added.

As the White House prepares for the next budget battle, President Obama also continues to insist that the government should be spending more. He is still advocating investment in infrastructure, such as spending on new roads, bridges and ports, as a key to promoting economic growth.

"I'm laying out my ideas to give the middle class a better shot," USA Today quoted Obama saying during a speech in Florida last week.

And Obama warns of the dire consequences that could lie ahead if Congress continues to play the same games as in the past.

The debt ceiling fight "harmed our recovery back in 2011," Obama told the crowd in Florida. "It could severely harm it again ... it could plunge us back into financial crisis."

But some question whether the president's warnings will raise the same level of alarm seen ahead of the sequester.

Some Americans are feeling the pinch of budget cuts but critics accuse both parties in Washington of playing politics with overstated gloom-and-doom predictions, NBC reported. The harshest effects have yet to materialize, they say. In fact, America has not plunged back into recession and jobs continue to be added to the economy each month.

Editor's Note: Economist Warns: ‘Money From Heaven a Path to Hell.’ See Evidence.

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