Former Mississippi GOP Gov. Haley Barbour says President Barack Obama hasn’t treated the country’s $16 trillion debt burden with the urgency it deserves.
“The president goes on TV the other day and says: Well, the debt and the deficit, that's a problem in the long term, but it's not a short-term problem,” Barbour told Greta Van Susteren of Fox News Monday night.
“The truth is the average American understands the truth: The government can't spend itself rich any more than your family can spend itself rich,” Barbour said. “But if you wait until the long term, the kinds of changes that you're going to have to make are unbelievable.”
Barbour also criticized the White House’s policy on layoffs related to automatic spending cuts. By law, companies that have to let workers go as a result of the sequestrations that begin Jan. 1 must give 60 days’ notice.
But Barbour said the Obama administration has told companies to go ahead and break the law, keeping layoff plans quiet, and it will cover their legal costs.
“It’s clearly politics,” Barbour said. “And it’s indefensible. The law is very clear. . . . This has been an administration where they have taken actions, the actions failed to get the result they wanted, and then they don’t come clean with the American people about it.”
The issue already has come up with Lockheed Martin’s layoff plan.
“I don’t blame Lockheed Martin or any other defense contractor,” Barbour said. “But the truth is the Democratic side wanted to make these defense cuts. The average employee . . . of you name the defense contractor, their jobs are in jeopardy because the left would not agree, and we're ending up with huge defense cuts.”
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