The White House has detailed the potential fallout in each state from budget cuts set to take effect at week’s end, while congressional Republicans and Democrats keep up the sniping over who’s to blame. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said on “Fox News Sunday” that there was little hope to dodge the cuts “unless the Republicans are willing to compromise and do a balanced approach.” No so fast, Republicans interjected. “I think the American people are tired of the blame game,” Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” Yet just a moment before, she was blaming President Barack Obama for putting the country on the brink of massive spending cuts that were initially designed to be so unacceptable that Congress would strike a grand bargain to avoid them. The $85 billion budget mechanism could affect everything from commercial flights to classrooms to meat inspections. With Friday’s deadline nearing, few in the nation’s capital were optimistic that a realistic alternative could be found. And, yes, those cuts will hurt. They would slash from domestic and defense spending alike, leading to furloughs for hundreds of thousands of government workers and contractors.
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