A recent study by Benjamin Zycher from the libertarian think tank the CATO Institute reaffirms what we’ve been saying all along: Cutting Pentagon spending will not cause the economic nightmare or job loss catastrophe the defense industry wants us to fear.
In addition to CATO, other right-leaning analysts, advocates, and politicians have also been vocally challenging the narrative that defense spending must not be decreased. Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, recently pledged to fight any efforts to divert tax reform revenues toward an increase in Pentagon spending or avoiding across-the-board budget cuts, known as sequestration. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R-Md.), a senior Republican on the House Armed Services Committee, has called for a national dialogue on sequestration, recognizing that “the average American out there, by big percentages, wants to cut defense by twice the sequester amount.”
This debate isn’t about which side of the aisle you are on—we can all recognize that national security is rooted in economic security. And in fact, Zycher finds that a reduction in defense outlays could actually result in significant economic gains down the road.