On October 21, Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate President Pro Tempore Orrin G. Hatch formally completed action on the fiscal year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and sent it to President Obama. The president now has ten calendar days, excluding Sunday, to either veto or sign the bill. Here are ten reasons the president should veto the NDAA.
Nuclear Weapons Spending
Last Friday marked the one-year anniversary of the Scottish independence
The United States is preparing to spend almost $704 billion over the next several decades on its nuclear arsenal. This astronomically high cost to modernize the US nuclear force comes despite the shifting nature of war and an ever growing budgetary problem. In light of this, can the United States afford such an expensive overhaul?
A forthcoming study by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) serves as a reminder that the US must evaluate the worthiness of investing billions of dollars into its nuclear arsenal. The study addresses affordability and concludes that “U.S. nuclear forces are affordable because their projected costs account for a small percentage of the overall defense budget.”
The 1987 INF treaty prohibits Russia and the United States from having land-based ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges between 500-5500 kilometers. The United States has accused Russia of testing a cruise missile that would violate this range, although there is no evidence that they have deployed these cruise missiles.
The Obama administration has requested $12.6 billion for the National Nuclear Security Agency (NNSA) as part of its Fiscal Year 2016 Department of Energy budget request. $1.9 billion of that request will go towards Defense Nuclear Non-Proliferation (DNN) programs tasked with preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and materials. The programs facilitate cooperation with international partners to better secure, monitor, and dispose of vulnerable nuclear material (military and civilian) and other radiological waste.