Most central New Yorkers won't notice the impact of federal budget cuts caused by sequestration right away, according to Syracuse-area Rep. Dan Maffei. But Maffei, who was in Syracuse today to tout the bipartisan passage of the Violence Against Women Act, says everyone will feel it eventually.
If Maffei, a Democrat, had his way, he says he "would lock up the White House and wouldn't let them out until they had a deal."
President Obama said at a press conference Friday he isn't going to do that.
Maffei is perplexed at the lack of urgency in Washington about mandatory budget cuts set to go into effect today. He says most people won't feel it initially.
"You're not going to notice this immediately," Maffei said. "It's like cutting the water off several miles away."
Maffei believes it will ultimately hurt a still struggling economy in central New York, with more people feeling the cuts in federal programs as time goes on. He contends that a balanced approach that combines spending cuts and increased revenue is the only way out of the current budget mess, but the lack of action in Washington on this day that sequestration is set to begin is no way to operate.
"The only thing that is unforgivable is to not do anything about it," he said. "To just allow it to happen and throw up your hands. So I'm ready at a moment's notice to get on a plane to vote for anything that is reasonable and sets that balanced approach."