The annual ritual of raising alarms and tearing out hair over the tiny size of the Pentagon budget has started again, but don’t believe the hype. There’s still tons of money in the Pentagon budget, and if we don’t act, they’ll find a way to add even more.
The proposed Pentagon budget for next year is the first one that meets spending caps set by Congress—caps that are still far higher than what is needed to keep us safe. But there’s another huge pot of unlimited money in the war budget, known as the Overseas Contingency Operations Fund.
That’s right, almost 13 years after the invasion of Afghanistan, the US government has an unlimited fund for war-fighting. Members of Congress who are panicking about funding cuts for their favorite programs in the base Pentagon budget are going to try to shove those programs into the OCO fund even though they have nothing to do with fighting wars overseas.
We need to stop this backdoor attempt to waste our tax dollars. Tell your senators and representative to oppose the slush fund.
The administration is still deciding on the war budget, but they have offered a placeholder of $79.4 billion. That’s barely a drop from previous years, even though the highest estimate for troops in Afghanistan next year is 10,000. Members of Congress will be tempted to pad that ridiculous amount with their pet projects.
We’ve had bipartisan support for reining in OCO funding before. Congress is starting to develop their version of next year’s budget, so they need to hear from us now. If we bring this practice into the sunlight, we can pressure Congress to stop this waste. Send your messages today.