|IAM Assistant Legislative and Political Action Director Bruce Olsson talks about the impact of budget cuts on the military and the American economy.|
The IAM is watching Congress closely as a looming budget showdown threatens to further deepen U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) cuts brought on by sequestration and a Republican-controlled Congress.
WATCH: The DOD Funding Dilemma
Congress has already slashed billions of dollars in defense funding in recent years, putting at risk the jobs of highly-skilled IAM members and ultimately testing America’s ability to face threats at home and abroad. Now GOP extremists are looking to shut down the government if they can’t end abortion funding, further scuttling any hope to restore defense dollars.
“You’re not cutting the fat. You’re cutting the bone. You’re cutting the muscle,” said IAM Assistant Legislative and Political Action Director Bruce Olsson. “You’re going to have setbacks in programs that will undermine the defense industrial base and will also hurt the nation’s economy as a whole.”
The budget cuts mandated by sequestration are taking a toll on the military manufacturing supply chain and have restrained it from making multi-year purchases of vital weapons systems.
“We had a military that was less prepared for major contingencies than it should have been. Fortunately… no major contingency happened,” said former DOD Under Secretary Robert F. Hale. “The military is paid to be ready and they weren’t as ready as they should have been during that period.”