Poverty and Public Health
2:40 pm
Mon February 11, 2013

Lujan Grisham Says Sequestration Threatens NM’s Economy

Michelle Lujan-Grisham speaking at today's press conference.
Michelle Lujan-Grisham speaking at today's press conference.

District 1 Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, says the impending sequestration crisis will hurt New Mexico’s economy. The Democrat was in Albuquerque today to meet with defense contractors and local business leaders.

On March 1st, the automatic cuts, known as sequestration, will take effect. Congress postponed them to March 1 as part of the “fiscal cliff” deal at the beginning of January.

Lujan Grisham says the spending cuts are across the board with no regard to what’s working and what’s not.

“Contracts are not going to be renewed, positions are being cut, and more New Mexicans are going to be unemployed. Let me repeat that this is one of the only states, maybe the only state, with negative job growth. And the CBO - the Congressional Budget Office- estimates that up to 1.4 million jobs are at risk because of sequestration.”

House Republicans say the sequestration threat is necessary to force Congress to eventually balance the budget.

On another subject, Lujan Grisham said she’s optimistic that a long-delayed vote on the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act will go forward.

“We finally have restored all of the provisions that created the failure of that measure because it didn’t protect women deep enough. It certainly didn’t do anything to protect Native American women in that context. And I think that we are seeing bipartisan movement to have the Violence Against Women Act passed in the 113th congress.”

The Act has encountered strong resistance from House Republican leaders who are opposed to some of the new provisions protecting immigrants, LGBT and Native Americans.