WASHINGTON–Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, made the following statement on the President’s FY20 budget request for the Department of Defense. The White House is expected to request $750 billion in DOD funding, $34 billion over FY19 funding levels. After accounting for inflation, the budget request represents only a 2.7% increase in real growth from FY19. Thornberry said:
“The United States faces a historically complex range of threats to our nation’s security. Meeting those threats requires continuing to restore the readiness of our forces, providing our troops with the best possible training and equipment, reforming the Pentagon to maximize resources, upgrading our weapons to stay ahead of potential adversaries, and taking good care of our military personnel and families. Former Secretary Mattis and General Dunford have both stated that achieving those goals requires between three to five percent real growth in the defense budget every year. The President’s request is in line with their recommendation. Despite some headlines, this level of spending is the minimum needed to continue to repair our military and defend the country.
“We also cannot allow ourselves to become distracted by the construction of the budget request. The Congress ultimately determines funding levels. Members on both sides of the aisle have already raised pointed questions to Administration witnesses and outside experts about the threats we face and persistent readiness shortfalls. They are right to do so. Our duty is clear, and it is our job to follow through and ensure we give our all-volunteer force the resources and authorities they need to accomplish the missions the nation asks of them. Again, this total level of spending, however it is constructed, is the minimum we need to provide if we are to fulfill our responsibilities.”
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