Austerity is coming to the military, perhaps. When the president proposes a 2013 budget next month, the defense budget is expected to be rolled back to the 2008 level, and then rise over the next decade only with inflation. That means a cut of $450 billion.

Click for Summary


U.S. Sen. Mark S. Kirk (R-Ill.) worries about cutting too much. “I’m concerned that the plans are we may have fewer airplanes in the Air Force [than] in the history of the U.S. Air Force. We may have, remember the 600-ship Navy? We may be down to less than 250 ships, and the U.S. Army may be the smallest … in decades,” he said.


Kirk says he’s for improving military efficiency, and closing some bases overseas that are not needed. He says the military can be and should be trimmed.


U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley (D-Chicago) is more open to cutting, noting that the U.S. has 11 aircraft carriers, while no other country has more than one. “I still think that we are fighting our grandfathers’ wars here,” he said. “Of nearly 50 [terrorism] attempts on this country … almost all of them were halted by what is in effect good police work.”

(Illinois Radio Network)