Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., chair of the Armed Services committee, has joined with ranking Republican Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and four other lawmakers to call for real compromise to end the budget crisis and avert military spending cuts. The new "Gang of Six" wrote to both parties' Senate leaders warning that sequestration would damage both the economy and national security. "Meeting this challenge will require real compromise, and we do not believe that Congress and the president can afford to wait until January to begin" negotiating in earnest, the senators wrote.

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