Obama Slams Republicans over Defense Cuts
Before Tuesday’s speech by Republican Mitt Romney to the national convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, President Obama spoke to the group on Monday. Obama claimed that the Republicans were willing to cut spending on defense to help balance the budget, while extending the tax cuts to the highest earners in the country.
On Monday, the president spoke to the convention attendees, while Romney will do so on Tuesday before traveling abroad to visit Poland, Israel and Britain. Obama used the address to say the call for the extension of tax cuts by Republicans could hurt the Pentagon. He said automatic cuts to spending would kick in to start closing the gap on the deficit since the tax cuts the Republican want will exacerbate the deficit.
Obama said Congress should agree upon a balanced approach with which to reduce the budget deficit that will keep the military strong. He also said that are many Republicans that do not want veterans and the general public to know they voted for the defense budget cuts.
Obama said instead of taking part in making difficult choices on how to lower the deficit, they would prefer to protect the tax cuts for wealthy Americans, even at the determent to the U.S. military.
Republicans hit back at Obama’s comments after his speech. Buck McKeon, the Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee accused the president of avoiding his part of the responsibility on the defense cuts that are scheduled to take place in January. McKeon said Obama played a role in setting up the automatic cuts and he now owes it to the troops to try to defuse them.
Obama also commented to the veterans that Romney has not shown that he can lead the U.S. military, as the president.