White House cancels public tours due to sequester

12:39 PM, Mar 5, 2013   |    comments
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David Jackson
USA Today

The White House announced Tuesday it is canceling public tours starting this weekend because of the sequester.

The tours will stop after Friday, said a recording on the White House visitors information line.

"Due to staffing reductions resulting from sequestration, we regret to inform you that White House Tours will be canceled effective Saturday, March 9, 2013, until further notice," the recording said. "Unfortunately, we will not be able to reschedule affected tours ... We very much regret having to take this action, particularly during the popular spring tour season."

The tours will stop a week after the onset of the sequester, $85 billion in automatic budget cuts over the next seven months.

President Obama and congressional Republicans are at odds over an alternative to the across-the-board cuts that affect defense and domestic programs.

Obama is seeking a new debt reduction agreement with targeted cuts and new tax revenues to be gained by closing loopholes and deductions that benefit the wealthy.

Republican leaders oppose new taxes and say any new debt deal should be cuts only.

USA Today

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