Obama cranks up budget showdown blame game
WASHINGTON (AFP) - President Barack Obama cranked up the blame game on Tuesday over "meat cleaver" budget cuts due in 10 days, warning of dire damage to the US economy and accusing Republicans of refusing to compromise.
Mr Obama surrounded himself with uniformed emergency workers who he said may not be able to respond to distress calls when stinging automatic billion-dollar cuts known as the "sequester" come into force on March 1.
"If Congress allows this meat cleaver approach to take place, it will jeopardise our military readiness, it will eviscerate job-creating investments in education and energy and medical research," Mr Obama said.
Emergency responders may not be able to properly respond to disasters, border patrol agents will see their hours cut and FBI agents will be furloughed, he warned.