Cuts to defense threaten nation

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Monday, June 4, 2012
This is among commentaries submitted to The Gazette from students at Janesville’s Craig and Parker high schools who did field studies in either Washington, D.C., or Madison in Advanced Placement U.S. government courses taught by Joe Van Rooy.

Congress and the president need to act on the issue of defense spending in order to prevent harmful cuts to the U.S. military and endangerment of our national security.

The simplest solution to this would be reversing a half-trillion dollars in automatic cuts, called sequestration, to the defense budget caused by the Budget Control Act of 2011. This is unlikely to happen, though, because congressional Democrats and Republicans differ on how they want to pay for reversal of sequestration.

Democrats want to raise taxes on the rich, which Republicans vehemently oppose, while Republicans want to pay for defense spending by cutting elsewhere—specifically domestic and entitlement programs. The most logical approach would be a combination of the two methods.

Closing tax loopholes and cutting some domestic programs could easily pay for the defense sequestration. Whatever the question, though, the fact of the matter is that this problem needs to be solved quickly.

“A strong national defense is necessary in the United States…in protecting its interests,” says Baker Spring, a F.M. Kirby research fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

John Roth, deputy comptroller at the Department of Defense, agrees. By the end of the year, he says, Congress needs to take care of sequestration.

If Congress does not act unilaterally to stop these destructive cuts, it is painfully obvious that the interests and the military of the United States will suffer dearly.

Last updated: 8:52 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012

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