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Rep. Upton talks about sequester

Updated: Saturday, March 2 2013, 11:38 AM EST
Rep. Upton talks about sequester story image
WASHINGTON, D.C (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – The 85-billion dollars in federal spending cuts known as "sequester" kicked in at midnight Friday.

Newschannel 3 spoke to a local lawmaker to find out exactly what’s happening in Washington.

Republican Congressman Fred Upton sounded a little frustrated over the phone, saying the Senate shot down two different bills to offset the spending cuts, both a Republican version and a Democrat one.
    
Now lawmakers have left town for the weekend with no deal in sight.

The billions of dollars in cuts are getting split between defense and domestic spending but will not affect Medicaid, social security, food stamps or veterans.
    
Government workers may be furloughed and the White House is warning of everything from fewer cops on the streets to longer lines at the airports.
    
But Republicans say the automatic cuts were the President's idea and some even suggest it might not be the worst thing for Washington.

Minority Leader Senator Mitch McConnell says, "We all agree it's not the best way to reduce spending but it's time we did that."

President Obama spoke on Friday saying, "Let's be clear: none of this is necessary.  It's happening because of a choice that Republicans in Congress have made."
    
Lawmakers in Washington will be back in session on Monday.
    
Congressman Upton says now that the sequester is in place, the House hopes to move forward with new legislation to deal with the cuts.

“The bill that we’re hoping to bring up next week for a vote will be a bill that extends the funding for all the different agencies through the rest of the fiscal year and provides the necessary flexibility for agencies like the Department of Defense to make priorities within the new sequester level,” Upton told Newschannel 3 in a phone interview.
    
Congressman Upton says his office has been getting lots of angry calls in the past few weeks from people who are upset about our country's spending problem and our government's inability to come to an agreement.

Stick with Newschannel 3 for the latest updates on the sequester coming out of Washington.
Rep. Upton talks about sequester
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