Posted: 12:37 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013

Congressman Mike Turner reacts to news on defense furloughs

By Tom Beyerlein

Dayton Daily News


Congressman Mike Turner came by the WHIO-TV, radio and Dayton Daily News offices today to talk about sequestration and the Defense Department’s announcement today that up to 800,000 civilian defense workers - including 13,000 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base are facing furloughs.

Here’s some of what he had to say. Watch our interview with him on WHIO-TV Channel 7 starting at 5 p.m.

“I voted against this mess in 2011 because I believed we’d be right here now,” Turner said. He also pointed out that he, along with Urbana Republican Jim Jordan, were the only members of the Ohio delegation that voted against the sequestration plan.

“We’re on the eve of what could be furloughs to 800,000, including 13,000 in our own community. These are cuts that go straight to the heart of protecting our men and women in uniform,” said Turner, R-Dayton.

He blamed the Democrat-controlled Senate, saying the House has passed two bills to head off the cuts, while “the president has no serious proposal on the table.”

Turner said if the cuts happen, they’ll have an impact that will be felt throughout the economy. He said when people are dealing with furloughs and the related reduction in pay, “they stop buying cars, the stop buying houses, they stop going to restaurants.”

“This was not unexpected, the enormity of these cuts.”

He declined to respond directly when asked if sequestration could have a public-relations blowback on House Republicans, saying he could only speak for himself.

A Feb. 12 Washington Post-ABC News poll found that 56 percent of registered voters, including 55 percent of independents and 64 percent of moderates, said they have an unfavorable impression of the policies the Republicans in Congress will pursue in the next four years.

“The parties need to come together. This is certainly a case where we need to put the partisan bickering aside.”


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