Why “Defense” Cuts Are So Hard

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Much as I’d love to pile on Lou Barletta and Tom Marino for the Tobyhanna cuts, I think it’s more important to point out that this is a good example of why it’s so hard to cut defense spending.

Stan Collender explains:

Note in this Roll Call story by Jonathan Strong about Pentagon cuts that will affect Pennsylvania that no one is saying the spending shouldn’t be reduced because it will hurt U.S. defense capabilities, hollow out of the military or do any of the other praise-the-Lord-and-pass-the-ammunition reasons that are typically used to argue against cuts. As Strong points out, the opposition to the military reductions is all about how it will hurt the local economy.

In other words, we don’t care if it reduces the deficit, the spending reductions will hurt me so they have to be stopped.

Lots of liberals say they want to cut the defense budget in the abstract, but then are all too happy to reverse course when defense cuts cost jobs in their district. It’s always the defense spending in somebody else’s district that’s the real waste, right?

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