Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Senator John McCain, in a rare moment of candor, gives some "straight talk" on the effects of the GOP Sequester. Prescott's The Daily Courier reports, U.S. senators visit firefighters' families; Biden coming Tuesday:
[Sens.] McCain and Flake expressed concerns about $115 million worth of automatic sequester cuts to wildland firefighting resources that McCain said will result in 500 fewer firefighters and 50 fewer fire engines this season.
McCain said the country needs more heavy air tankers after dropping from 44 in 2002 to 18 last year. He and other members of Congress have asked the Department of Defense to transfer more of its older planes to the Forest Service. "It's clear that we are facing cuts that will reduce the capability of the Forest Service...to fight these fires," McCain said.
One-fourth of Arizona has burned in wildfires over the last decade, he said, citing the long-term drought and overstocked forests as contributing factors. He supports more timber contracts to thin out the forests.
"In the older days, fires just swept through and didn't do damage," he said. "They do now."
Our firefighters are being asked to do more with less, which puts their lives on the line. How many more lives need to be lost?