Tuesday, May 22, 2012

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Johnson chastises Congress over exempted military budget cuts Karl Dickey West Palm Beach Libertarian Examiner Calling it proof that last year’s budget agreement was a “charade”, Libertarian presidential candidate and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson today criticized the U.S. House of Representatives for voting to “renege” on scheduled budget cuts for next year. Led by Republicans, the House voted late last week to exempt $55 billion in military spending from automatic spending cuts scheduled to take effect next year as the result of the failure of the deficit reduction “super committee” to reach agreement on a budget. Johnson made the following statement today: “When the purported conservatives in Congress, the House Republicans, vote to renege on a deal to cut defense spending by $55 billion, how are we supposed to believe that anyone in Washington really means it when they say they want to eliminate deficits? It is clear that the ‘budget deal’ Congress concocted last year was, and is, a charade. “Maintaining a strong national defense is obviously important. But violating their own budget agreement with the excuse that a 10 percent reduction in military spending would somehow be disastrous is classic Washington. We spend almost as much each year on defense as the rest of the world combined. If Congress can’t figure out how to reduce that spending by $55 billion, we need a new Congress. “Before last week’s vote in the House, we heard all kinds of pained cries that a $55 billion cut would mean troop strength would have to be reduced, bases would be closed, and that we would have a smaller Navy and Air Force. To that, I say: Exactly. That’s what happens when you reduce spending to rational levels we can afford. We are bankrupt. We simply cannot afford to have hundreds of thousands of troops in places like Europe...