Republicans consider defense cuts

June 27, 2011 at 12:43 PM
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WASHINGTON, June 27 (UPI) -- Republicans in Washington are saying there are no sacred cows when it comes to budget cuts, including defense spending.

"When we say everything is on the table, that's what we mean," said House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., The Washington Post reported Monday.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said, "Everything is on the table," but said how defense spending cuts would be implemented "belongs in the appropriations process."

In an interview Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., said defense was "a pillar of Republican strength. It's a pillar of national strength." He added, however: "I know there are sacred cows. But we cannot afford them anymore."

The Republican leadership is scheduled to meet with President Barack Obama to try to get past a stalemate in budget talks. Last week, Republicans abandoned a bi-partisan committee led by Vice President Joseph Biden, complaining that Democrats had were insisting on tax hike.

"Make no mistake. There needs to be revenues in any deal," Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., told reporters Friday.

Republicans have threatened to vote no on raising the federal limit for borrowing. Failure to do so by Aug. 2 would be a catastrophe, the Treasury Department has said.

Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., said, "Defense spending is damaging spending. Many of us believe it does more harm than good to our people and to our reputation in the world.

"If we can get $100 billion from reducing unneeded military spending, that's better than $100 billion in taxation," he said.

In the budget discussions so far, the White House has proposed $1 trillion in spending cuts while Cantor has proposed $1.7 trillion, the newspaper said.

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