President Barack Obama had some dire warnings for Congress when he proposed his $4 trillion budget Monday: Cut it, and the military and the economy will suffer. But budget experts said Obama’s statement doesn’t reflect reality and is just the president defending his spending plan.
Obama is asking for a $25 billion increase in the defense budget, which would balloon to $585 billion if his recommendation is passed by Congress. With a Republican-controlled Congress looking to reduce spending, that’s unlikely to happen. But it’s still possible to fund defense at a lower level than Obama’s request and still have military readiness, said Matthew Leatherman, adviser for foreign affairs and defense budgeting for the Stimson Center, a Washington nonpartisan global security think tank.