Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Senators: Further cuts unacceptable

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., pointed to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's dire description of the impact of further cuts in defense spending as the latest evidence that up to $600 billion in automatic defense spending cuts "should not be allowed to occur." The senators' comments came in response to a letter Panetta sent Monday listing cuts in weapons programs, end strength and the civilian workforce that likely would occur under a worst-case budget scenario. (Source: Defense Communities 360, 11/14/11) Meanwhile, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, is urging the congressional deficit-reduction supercommittee to consider closing unneeded overseas bases, rather than slashing force structure or weapons systems. Last year, the president's bipartisan deficit reduction commission estimated that responsible overseas base closings could save taxpayers $8.5 billion through 2015. (Source: Defense Communities 360, 11/14/11)