SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WALA) - US Senator Richard Shelby warns the nation is headed for financial suicide, and he says the cuts forced by sequestration won't be enough to stop it.
Shelby visited several towns in south Alabama on Saturday to meet and greet the public. His first stop was in Baldwin County, a continuation of a tradition he started 27 years ago when he was first elected to the senate. ]
Every year, he visits all 67 counties in Alabama. Saturday, Shelby talked to a modest crowd at Cheryl's Café in Spanish Fort Saturday morning about a variety of topics. But the biggest message he shared dealt with the economy.
Shelby, armed with charts and graphs, warned the nation remains on a dangerous spending course. The senator said the dreaded sequester will not prevent future financial disaster.
"The point was that even with the sequester, $85 billion worth of cuts, now that's only a small amount of the cutting we're going to have to do to right the ship, to right the economic ship, to make this country viable again where we can create jobs, and create certainty in the market place. If we don't do this we're headed down the road of financial suicide just like Greece. We just got a few more years," Shelby said.
Shelby believes even more cuts are needed.
"I think that sooner or later we're going to have to cut everything. It depends, Military and Defense, you've got a lot of waste and you've got a lot of duplication and we don't know what it is, because we haven't done the oversight yet to ascertain that," he said.
Shelby, a republican, thinks his party has a better approach to the cuts.
"What we want to do is not across the board, but give flexibility to evaluate programs. There are a lot of programs that we don't need. We don't know which ones they are, because they've never been properly evaluated," he explained.
"The Democrats' resolution is more taxes. The republicans' resolution is trying to give some flexibility to the military and the other agencies to cut. We're just beginning cut. This is $85 Billion. I showed you the chart. We're going to have to cut a lot more in the future, and we're going to have to deal with entitlements whether we like it or not, and it's a question of do we have the political courage to do it. I hope so," he said.
Shelby will attend a Chamber of Commerce breakfast in Mobile on Monday.
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