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Sen. John McCain not optimistic on sequester deal

PHOENIX -- The clock continues to tick down toward March 1, when a package of massive federal spending cuts take effect automatically if Congress and the president can't find a solution before the deadline.

Some call it the sequester, others say it's fiscal cliff, part two. Sen. John McCain just called it devastating, adding that the cuts to Arizona could cost 49,000 jobs, with 35,000 in the defense industry alone.

"It's outrageous and shameful and impairs the ability to defend our nation in these very tense times with great challenges to our national security," he said.

McCain laid the blame squarely on the president for the situation.

"During the campaign the president said, 'Won't happen.' And now he's saying as long as we don't raise taxes, etc."

McCain said Arizona will lose almost $5 billion in state product in the sequester, with a majority of that in defense.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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