Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Kerry Wanted to Gut Intelligence

In 1994, Kerry filed an amendment that would have cut the defense budget by $4 billion, but he was opposed by his own party, including Senator Inouye who said this on the Senate floor:

Madam President, if I may, I would like to say a few words about amendment No. 1452, an amendment submitted by the distinguished Senator from Massachusetts [Mr. Kerry].
The amendment offered by Senator Kerry would reduce the 1994 appropriations for national defense by about $4 billion. I believe the Members of this body should recall that Congress has already reduced DOD's budget in 1994 by more than $18 billion. Moreover, in each and every year of the past 10 years, Congress has cut the funds provided for defense. We have already cut defense spending drastically. ...

Kerry's amendment not only tried to cut defense, but to slash intelligence funding -- and the implications of this were clear at the time:

Now if I may comment on another section that reduces funding for intelligence programs, and this amendment would reduce such funding by about $1 billion. Madam President, the intelligence budget has already been cut by almost 18 percent over the past 2 years. An additional reduction of $1 billion would severely hamper the intelligence community's ability to provide decisionmakers and policymakers with information on matters of vital concern to this country.

These issues include nuclear proliferation by North Korea--this has been on the front pages for the past 3 or 4 months--peacekeeping efforts in Bosnia and Somalia, as well as terrorist threats against American citizens and property. ...

At a time like this, is it prudent to reduce funds for the very intelligence programs which we need to identify these targets? This amendment would do that. It would blind our pilots. Is this the time to cut the satellite programs that give our forces warning of attacks? I hope that we will keep this in mind... If we do and this amendment passes, then we are putting blindfolds over our pilots' eyes. ...

I urge all Members to vote against this amendment.

Citzen Smash has a lot more.

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