House Republicans resoundingly rejected even modest cuts in defense spending last week, sending an uncomfortable message to leaders negotiating cuts for a debt ceiling deal. After three days of floor debate, the GOP shot down even modest reductions of military spending, including cuts for military bands or the Pentagon's sponsorship of NASCAR races, reports Politico.
Conservative GOP frosh Rep. Mick Mulvaney proposed freezing Pentagon spending at 2011 levels, but almost three-quarters of his party balked at the idea. A bipartisan compromise preserving an $8.5 billion increase received just 47 GOP votes. “The military budget is not on the table,” Barney Frank lamented. “The military is at the table, and it is eating everybody else’s lunch." (Read more federal budget talks stories.)