Reporters really want to know: Is the sequester affecting your life yet?

Jeff Jones
Engagement Editor
Public Insight Network

Today marks one week of somewhat-more-limited government under the effects of sequestration. The automatic budget cuts that took effect last Friday cut $85.4 billion from the current year’s budget, taken more-or-less equally from defense spending and domestic programs.

The debate in Washington has focused on whether the automatic cuts to federal spending will harm the overall economy. But journalists in newsrooms around the country are now trying to size up the effects on local residents and businesses. And they need your help.

Have you felt the effects of the budget cuts yet? Federal workers, government contractors, people on unemployment benefits or doctors getting Medicare payments are are quite likely affected. People seeking certain government services could experience frustrations as a result. We want to know where the sequester has touched your life.

Here’s a list of Public Insight Network newsrooms that are asking questions about sequestration. If you live near any of the following areas, please take a moment to share your story. If you don’t, pick the question that you’re best able to answer.


The Miami Herald and WLRN ask: How will the sequester affect you and which political party you trust more on matters of budgets and debt?.


MPR News wants to know: How are you connected to the federal government and are the budget cuts touching you and your family yet?

Southern California

KPCC-Southern California Public Radio ask you to choose from a list of ways you could be affected by the budget cuts.

St. Louis, Mo.

The St. Louis Beacon and 9 Network of Public Media ask: Do you receive federal government services or work with agencies affected by the budget cuts?

Washington, D.C.

The Washington Post is specifically looking to federal workers when they ask: 

And WAMU has three different questions:


Jeff Jones Engagement Editor
Public Insight Network

Jeff Jones is the Engagement Editor for the Public Insight Network. He’s worked for Minnesota Public Radio/American Public Media since 2003, including producing and directing MPR’s “All Things Considered” with host Tom Crann from 2006 to 2010. He has edited hundreds of broadcast interviews, but the most memorable ones feature “regular folks” with surprising stories to tell.

Jeff strongly believes that places have stories, too. So he created MPR Sound Point, a mobile phone-based audio tour of interesting places in Minneapolis and Duluth that gives listeners a chance to “talk back” via the PIN.