Tuesday, January 26, 2016

GOP Candidates Misstate Military Spending

Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio maintains that President Barack Obama is more interested in providing money to Planned Parenthood than for the nation's armed forces. The front-runner in the GOP race, Donald Trump, says the U.S. military is a "disaster." Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush says the Obama administration has "gutted" every weapons system in the U.S. military's inventory.
Gutted? Disaster?
It's become a staple for the Republican candidates to trash Obama and argue that he has failed to spend enough on defense. At the debates and campaign stops, they've cast him as a feckless commander in chief, standing idly by while the world's finest military withers away.
What's lost in the din: Money spent on weapons modernization is on par with the Republican George W. Bush administration. The military cuts that GOP contenders are complaining about were approved by Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill. The military budget is being squeezed by the insistence of lawmakers in both parties that money be spent on bases and equipment that the Pentagon says it doesn't need.
And the government spends roughly 1,000 times more on the armed forces than on Planned Parenthood.
Some of the GOP candidates' claims and how they compare with the facts: