Congress Should Enact a Strong Defense Budget in FY 2017

President Obama recently outlined his proposal for the federal government’s fiscal year (FY) 2017 budget. Congress is now debating what their 2017 budget should be, and one of the central questions is the appropriate level of defense spending.

A diverse array of threats over the past year has intensified the debate about national defense spending, making the question of what the correct amount of spending should be all the more pressing. The best way to approach this question is by examining America’s vital interests and the threats against them, and then determining what investments ought to be made to secure those interests.

Instead of accepting the lower defense budget level proposed by President Obama, Congress should: recognize the growing threats to U.S. vital interest, increase the national defense budget to no less than $600 billion for FY 2017, and reduce non-defense discretionary spending to cover the increased defense budget.

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