No One Will Cut Defense

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Christopher A. Preble is pessimistic about reining in military spending in the short-term:

It seems that a combination of factorsincluding war fatigue, massive budget deficits, and long-term fiscal imbalanceare not enough to convince Republican leaders to get serious about military spending cuts. The appeals from traditional conservatives and Tea Party activists don't register.

Polling which shows support for cuts, even among rank-and-file Republicans, can't budge the "find cuts elsewhere" caucus. There is even a growing appreciation that, in the words of Sen. Tom Coburn’s spokesman John Hart: “By subsidizing our allies’ defense budgets, American taxpayers are essentially subsidizing France’s 35-hour workweek and Western European socialism.” Hart told Politico, “Taking defense spending off the table keeps American taxpayers on the hook for more government at home and abroad.” So far, not even this line of argument has moved the needle very far.

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