Congressman Randy Neugebauer spoke at "Coffee with the Congressman" Thursday morning at the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, discussing a variety of topics with over 75 attendees. Subjects included the Farm Bill, government spending and the controversial sequestration which will go into effect in 10 days unless Congress can find a way to get around the billions in spending cuts.
"We're really talking about a relatively small cut: about 5% across the board in the form of defense, 3% for some other agencies but what we really need to do is come together and come up with a long range plan for how we solve these deficits," said Neugebauer. The congressman disagrees with the President's suggestion that the cuts will create mass layoffs in America.
"We need to have a discussion about how we spend American tax payers' hard earned money and come up with a budget and live within our means just like families all across West Texas have to do," he said.
Neugebauer said Republicans feel like they're alone at the table and want Democrats to offer their own proposals so they can start true negotiations. One thing Neugebauer insists is that Congress must be open to wide-ranging cuts.
"I think we can trim the defense some but we've also got to look at some of these programs that are on auto pilot like Medicare and Medicaid and social security." He states that without acting, these programs will go bankrupt.
In regard to the Farm Bill which is set to expire on September 30th, Neugebauer said it's essential that we help farmers out because they are essential to the economy.
"Agriculture's big business, particularly big business out here and you know a lot of capital investment has to be made and planning decisions or market decisions." He states that the current system "makes it difficult for lenders to lend and the farmers to make long range plans."
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