August 7th, 2012
05:36 PM ET
(CNN) – As far as bill signings at the White House go, President Obama on Tuesday signed the Sequestration Transparency Act to little fanfare.
But the legislation, which passed the Senate by unanimous consent and the House by a 414-2 margin last month, could prove to be a major headache for the president come late November, whether or not he is reelected.
That’s because the relatively obscure bill, initially backed by Republicans, forces the Obama administration to specifically spell out the full effect of the required $1.2 trillion cuts to domestic and defense programs if Congress doesn’t agree to a deficit-reduction plan of their own by January 2, 2013.
Should Congress fail to reach an agreement ahead of the so-called “fiscal cliff,” the Budget Control Act of 2011 mandates across-the-board cuts, or “sequestration.” While the specter of sequestration has been looming for months, the extent to which certain programs will be affected remains fairly vague.