When Does the Sequester Go Into Effect?

It had been widely assumed that the dreaded across-the-board spending cuts would go into effect at midnight on Thursday - as the calendar turns to March 1.

But, that is not the case.

By law, the President must issue an order for the cuts sometime - any time - on March 1. That means the true deadline is 11:59 PM on Friday. So - the meeting tomorrow between the President and Republican leaders will take place at least a few hours before the sequester order needs to go into effect.


Speaking of meetings: White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said the President had "a brief conversation" with Congressional leaders on Capitol Hill today before a ceremony in Statuary Hall unveiling a new statue of Rosa Parks.

It must have been a lightning-quick conversation.

The President's motorcade pulled up to the Capitol at 10:55 AM. He appeared in at the Rosa Parks ceremony at 11:04. That would have left nine minutes for the President to get out of his car, enter the Capitol building, walk up Statuary Hall on the second floor and to have his "meeting" with Congressional leaders before appearing at the Rosa Parks ceremony.

Related: President Obama to Meet Friday with Congressional Leaders