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Add college students and researchers at universities and in the government to the long, long list of people who will be totally screwed by the sequester. Tens of thousands of students will face cuts to work study hours and other forms of aid, and cuts to research grants mean cuts to research jobs:
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) would be forced to delay or halt vital scientific projects and make hundreds of fewer research awards. Since each research award supports up to seven research positions, several thousand personnel could lose their jobs.
Those research cuts could affect students directly, as well:
With the loss of these federal grants, undergraduate research assistants would likely be the first to get cut, University of Washington vice provost for research Mary Lidstrom told Oregon Public Broadcasting.
It's not just the people, either. When you cut researchers, you delay or even lose the work they're doing, and if the researchers don't find new jobs in their fields, they may not be able to keep up with new developments such that they can easily come back if funding ever returns. So you lose the expertise and potential for innovation of at least some of the people laid off. This isn't a threat that exists only for less skilled researchers, either:
Although Harvard University has the largest endowment by far, they depend on federal dollars for 60 percent of research funding. With the sequester looming and after years of flat funding, Harvard has already begun to scale back its research, the Crimson reports.
You know if there are cuts happening at the richest, most prestigious university in the country, it's far worse at less wealthy, less elite institutions. So the sequester doesn't just mean pain right now for people who will lose work study and financial aid or their jobs. It means a major setback in the capacity of the United States to research health and science and more, not just now but for years to come.

All so Republicans can protect tax loopholes for giant corporations and the wealthiest people. (Of course, Republicans are not exactly the biggest fans of science, so what do they care?)

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 10:52 AM PST.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions and Daily Kos.

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