New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has a message for the White House about the dire warnings they keep issuing about looming spending cuts: “Spare me.”
“There’s a lot of posturing – ‘I’m going to lay off my employees today unless you do something. We’re going to close the hospitals down. We going to take all the prisoners from jail and put them on the street. Spare me. I live in that world. I mean come on,” Bloomberg said, mocking the warnings coming from the administration.
He’s the mayor of the largest city, but Bloomberg says he’s not overly worried about across-the-board spending cuts known as the “sequester” set to go into effect on Friday.
“On Monday we’ll be able to police the streets, there will be a fire engine that responds, an ambulance, teachers will be in front of the classroom. If there’s snow, we’ll be able to plow,” Bloomberg said.
Bloomberg was speaking to reporters at the White House immediately after meeting with Vice President Biden to discuss gun control.
On Monday, the White House issued a report on how the cuts will affect each state. For New York, the White House warned the cuts would jeopardize clean water, security and public health while forcing thousands of children out of childcare and Head Start.
Although he finds the warnings overblown, Bloomberg said he doesn’t like the so-called “sequester” cuts. Instead of using a “meat cleaver” to cut federal spending, he said the president and Congress should come together to control the costs of the big entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare.
“It’s not good for the county,” Bloomberg said of the current budget impasse. “We need to have the White House, the Republicans, and Democrats, and Congress come together and intelligently find a way to reduce the deficit, but not with a meat axe. It needs to be carefully thought out.”
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