Insiders Analyze Election's Potential Effect on Defense Spending
Republicans historically support increased defense spending, but most defense analysts predict that the current economic climate and existing defense spending trends will “smooth out the bumps” in the new Congress and prevent any significant increases. Yet incoming House Armed Services Chairman Howard “Buck” McKeon (R-CA), whose defense lobbying contacts were featured in this blog last week, has already signaled his disapproval with current spending levels. Speaking after the election on Wednesday, Mr. McKeon said that “our citizens have spoken, and they want a defense budget that is sufficient to address the challenges of today and the threats of tomorrow.” More importantly, he continued to note that the planned “one percent real growth in the base defense budget over the next five years is a net reduction for modernization efforts which are critical to protecting our nation’s homeland.” While the defense committees have focused on decreasing defense spending in the last few years, with bipartisan support within the committees, it will be interesting to see what impact, if any, the new House leadership has on this trend.
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