House to vote on cutting military spending this week
The Republican House leadership took a meat cleaver to the continuing resolution that would fund the government through the rest of the 2011 fiscal year (ending October 1st). The Republicans on the Appropriations Committee hailed it as the “largest single discretionary spending reduction in the history of Congress.”
While Republicans cut $100 billion from the president’s 2011 request, the Pentagon budget actually grows by $8 billion under their proposal. Many of the loudest deficit hawks have shown how thin their fiscal discipline really is with support for everything from tax cuts for the rich to military spending that is almost more than the rest of the world’s military spending combined.
Thankfully, some representatives have offered amendments to try to correct this imbalance. A few of the best ones:
- Rep. Pete Stark’s (D-CA) amendment would limit Defense Department spending to Fiscal Year 08 levels, to line it up with reductions Republicans demanded in domestic funding. This amendment is based on a corresponding bill we’re supporting, H.R. 413.
- Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s (D-NY) amendment would cut all military funding for the war in Afghanistan, except for $10 billion for withdrawing troops.
- Rep. Jared Polis’ (D-CO) amendment follows recommendations made by the Sustainable Defense Task Force, calling for limiting troops stationed in Europe to 35,000 and cutting force structure by 7,500.
- Rep. Dennis Kucinich’s (D-OH) amendment would cut all funding for the wasteful, ineffective missile defense system.
Votes on these amendments are scheduled for Thursday, so please take a minute to call your representative and ask him or her to support these amendments. You can reach the congressional switchboard toll free at 1-800-427-8619.