• Janet Napolitano: The border is less secure because of budget cuts

    Power Players

    Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says that, although safety is her top priority, there is no way around cutting back on border patrol agents monitoring the country's borders because of the across-the-board spending cuts, known as "the sequester," that went into effect over the weekend.

    "The number of border patrol hours that will need to be reduced equates to the equivalent of 5,000 border patrol agents, so we have fewer border patrol agents between the ports of entry," the secretary of homeland security told ABC's senior national correspondent Jim Avila in an exclusive interview. "We're going to do everything we can to minimize that impact on our nation's security, but that's just the plain fact of it."

    When asked about the Department of Homeland Security's controversial decision to begin releasing illegal immigrants from jails across the country last week in preparation for sequestration, Napolitano said she was not involved in making the decision.

    "The

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  • Eric Holder on decision day: the country will be less safe

    Power Players

    Attorney General Eric Holder says the country is less safe because of the across-the-board spending cuts that go into effect today and that those who claim the administration has been fear mongering about the cuts simply don't have the facts straight.

    "This is something that is gonna have an impact on the safety of this country, and anybody who says that that's not true is either lying or saying something that runs contrary to the facts," Holder told ABC in an exclusive interview, pointing out that F.B.I. agents, ATF agents, and prosecutors will be furloughed because of the cuts. "We are gonna be a nation that is gonna be less safe, and that is a simple fact."

    The attorney general got emotional when talking about the Newtown tragedy, saying the day he toured Sandy Hook Elementary School after the shooting was his "worst day as attorney general."

    "Walking through Sandy Hook Elementary School and going into those classrooms and seeing the caked blood, seeing the crime

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  • Spending cuts fact or fiction: The “half-truths” about tomorrow’s budget cuts

    Top Line

    With looming across-the-board budget cuts set to take effect tomorrow if Congress and the White House fail to reach a deal, there have been a lot of “apocalyptic” warnings coming from Washington. While the significance of the cuts should not be "belittled," fact-checker Bill Adair tells Top Line the truth has been twisted and exaggerated in this ongoing political drama.

    Perhaps the most alarming warning about tomorrow's cuts, known as "the sequester," has come from President Obama, who has said that "federal prosecutors will have to close cases and let criminals go." Adair says that while the Justice Department will indeed have to cut back on prosecutions, dangerous criminals are not going to be wandering the streets starting tomorrow.

    "From what we could tell, [it was] a vast exaggeration to equate that with letting criminals go, wording that really implies opening the prison doors and letting people stream out, and so that one got a mostly false on the truth-o-meter," says

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