The power players in the Maryland congressional delegation are pressuring Democratic leaders to oppose any new cuts affecting federal workers as part of a budget deal.
The lawmakers, who hold prominent spots in both chambers and represent thousands of federal employees, have long argued that those workers have been hit disproportionately amid efforts to cut deficit spending.
As the high-stakes negotiations of the latest budget conference continue ahead of its Dec. 13 deadline for a deal — and as federal benefit cuts are among the suggested ways to offset the sequester — the Maryland lawmakers are looking to leadership to help scuttle such proposals before they work their way into a final agreement.
In their weekly meeting with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), several ranking members of prominent committees made clear Wednesday that they oppose any new cuts for federal workers.
“Federal employees have become the whipping folks whenever there’s a need for money or some kind of offset,” Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), the senior Democrat on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee and a participant in the meeting, said afterward. “I think it’s totally unfair, and I think you would hear that from most of us from Maryland and Virginia.”
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