Rand Paul On Defense Spending: ‘Why Don’t We Jettison Some Of The Crap… We Don’t Need?’


Kentucky senator Rand Paul has been one of the most vocal Republican politicians calling for cuts in defense spending. He was in attendance last week at a private dinner with other Republican senators, joined by former vice president Dick Cheney. Paul did not give reporters details of the private meeting, but did make it clear he disagrees with Cheney on increasing defense spending. Paul said that the Pentagon should be audited, arguing if they did, they would start to ask “Well, why don’t we jettison some of the crap here we’re doing we don’t need?”

Paul spoke in favor of a defense sequester, putting himself at odds with his colleagues who oppose the proposal. He said that he would be willing to work with fellow legislators on a compromise whereby increased defense spending would be balanced out with “true one-to-one spending cuts somewhere else.” Paul argued that conservatives defend military spending while liberals defend domestic spending, and they need to come together and realize they need to work on reducing all spending.

Paul also made the case for auditing the Pentagon, saying if this happens the government might realize there’s a lot of “crap” they could do away with.

“Look at [the idea of] auditing the Pentagon. They’ve been talking about having an audit for 30 years probably. They’ve now said it’s coming in 2017. And my guess is that in 2016 it’s going to be 2024, in 2023 they’ll tell us it’s going to be 2030. But I bet you if we said next year you’ve got to meet this sequester, maybe then all of a sudden they’ll say ‘Well why don’t we jettison some of the crap here we’re doing we don’t need?’ They’ll never do it unless their top line number is ever reduced.”

h/t Slate

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: josh@mediaite.com Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac