A Senate hearing Thursday was essentially a presentation of worst-case scenarios from cabinet members. Sequestration will likely lead to tens of thousands of workers to lose their jobs. Unemployment will be higher. There will be fewer teachers and larger class sizes.
Not to mention cutting funding that could rebuild 10,000 homes damaged by Hurricane Sandy.
And if TSA employees are furloughed there will be an extra hour wait in airport security lines. There will be even longer delays to clear customs for international travel, upwards of four hours.
Despite these scenarios, so far on the Hill it's a lot of talk and little action.
“No one wants to be blamed for the sequester going into effect,” says POLITICO’s national political reporter James Hohmann. “That's why Republicans try to blame the President and the President says Democrats have a plan.”
That latest plan, though, according to Hohmann, would only bridge the financial gap through the end of 2013 - not the long-term solution that Congress and Americans have been waiting for.
The problem is, many analysts believe even if lawmakers do cave to public pressure, it won't happen until the last minute, meaning another potential deadline deal is looming.