OK

CBS News, Governor Jan Brewer of Arizona and President Barack Obama.
Uh oh. Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is pissed at President Obama again.
The sequester cuts that we all knew were coming are hitting customs and border protection in the ways we knew they would, and Republicans are freaking out. Border patrol agents will be furloughed and have overtime hours cut as their agency's funding is slashed by $500 million. That's because the sequester is an indiscriminate across-the-board kind of thing—that's how it was designed, and Republicans knew what was coming when they flatly refused to put things like corporate tax loopholes on the table in a bargain to avert it. The border patrol agents union says these cuts will make things easier for smugglers; an expert points out, though, that since the border patrol is currently larger than it's ever been, the cuts will only roll things back to where they've been in recent years. What's undeniable is that the agents will lose a lot of pay.

But despite the total lack of anything surprising in what's being cut by sequestration, to the Republican border paranoia crowd, it's time for OUTRAGE:

[Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's] spokesman, Matthew Benson, said the Border Patrol reductions would be “outrageous” and could put Arizonans at risk.

“The White House approach to sequestration seems to be to create as much pain and public panic as possible,” Benson said in a telephone interview. “Any cut that impacts public safety should be a last resort.”

Joe Arpaio, elected to his sixth term as sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona’s largest, as he faced a federal civil- rights lawsuit over immigration-related arrests, criticized the planned reduction.

“You shouldn’t take away resources when you still have a problem,” Arpaio, 80, said yesterday in an interview. “It doesn’t make sense.”

The United States has a lot of problems. High unemployment and poor job creation, crumbling bridges, schools in desperate need of repair, a shredded safety net. Republicans have no problem making all those things worse and worse—hell, that's the whole idea of Republican governance. But deal the same treatment to the border patrol and ZOMG, it cannot be tolerated. Except that it will be tolerated, because as we see here, Republicans who are upset about it are just claiming it's all the president's fault, as if their party has nothing to do with anything.

Tell Congress it's time to end tax loopholes for corporations and the wealthy.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 08:23 AM PST.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions and Daily Kos.

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