Pentagon partly to blame for defense cuts?
Cost management examined as budget squeeze looms
- Duration 4:44
- Date Feb 14, 2013
Cost management examined as budget squeeze looms
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This transcript is automatically generated
-- backlash after comments made by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta slamming congress.
Over these looming defense cuts.
Often times they feel.
Like they don't have a full partnership.
With with my former colleagues on the hill.
In trying to do what's right for this country I I don't you know I don't I don't pretend that we always make the right decision we make mistakes.
But -- what I look for.
Or members who were willing to work with us to try to work our way.
Through some tough issues and be able to find solutions.
We need to find solutions.
We can't just sit here and -- we can't just sit here and complain.
We can't just sit here and blame others we can't just sit here and point fingers at each other.
We can't just sit here and try to get sound -- we can't just sit here and trying to make points political points.
We have got to solve real problems facing this country.
That is one heck of an exit interview there -- some Republican lawmakers -- the Pentagon itself is partly to blame.
JD Gordon former Defense Department spokesman for Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates my guest announcer it's an honor to have you on our program good morning to you.
-- to be here it's a way to go out what do you think about what he's making the point he's making.
-- I understand that he's frustrated but you know I think a lot of the frustration should go back to the Obama administration.
It was the Obama -- administration that insisted that we have a sequester if the -- super committee failed to reach an agreement.
And they failed to reach an agreement and I remember very specifically at one of the presidential debates President Obama told governor Romney it sequestration is not gonna happen.
-- two weeks away and it looks like it's gonna happen and it's going to be devastating for the military we're talking about curtailed military operations around the globe.
Reduce funding for maintenance and training.
And also 800000 -- civilians are looking at a furlough or forced time off without pay so this is going to be very devastating and we're just getting started with secrets -- It's it's -- made that last point you make -- something a lot of people haven't talked about.
Civilian employees could be put on furlough for a minimum of 22 days a minimum of at least three weeks.
Back to what Panetta saying there.
What I look for -- members willing to work -- us we can't just sit here and complain use a different word all use the word complaint is he just talking about Republicans.
Or is it Democrats as well.
You know I think he's talking about both both the Democrats Republicans have to come to agreement on how to fix -- situation right now.
Because all words -- very difficult situation and you know get back to the first one or make and I I think that.
-- the Pentagon could have done not some better job with its finances but these are very complex issue that but I I'm glad that's a big point there.
-- what could have done Judy.
Well I I think one of the main issues is that we had a very large increase in the size of the military with 9/11.
The Iraq War Afghanistan war and with the budget control -- from last year -- -- gonna cut a 100000 ground troops.
But we really don't have an equivalent program to cut back with a number of DOD civilians.
So I think we need to have a draw down via attrition over time but not just an across the board cut.
Not just taking basically a month away from DOD civilians who have worked so hard to protect this country.
So I think that's one thing we need to have a -- draw -- of DOD civilians and not just an across the board cut -- you another you believe those are another one Dominican Jonathan go ahead and on -- -- other big issue is acquisition reform we have a lot cost overruns from major programs.
But the reason we have cost overruns is because the technology involved some of these programs are so expensive.
And I guess the last point I'd make on that is -- his health care costs.
The military -- population is like the civilian population and there are large amount of baby boomers.
And that cost a lot of money in health care costs health care costs of Ron bought up across the board for the whole country.
So those are the three areas I think the Pentagon could have done a better -- -- -- you'd think that Panetta has the right to be frustrated.
But the at the end of that -- there he said we've got to solve real problems facing this country.
In your opinion did he help solve those problems.
If he did to some extent but I think that that he's trying to place the blame squarely on congress.
When really the blame should be focused I think -- Bob an illustration.
The Obama's administration was supposed to lead on this and I think what they did is they just created this.
Super committee super committee that handled the dead it was able to come to an agreement and so they thought the sequestration would be so painful.
That it would never have not happened but everybody and on Capitol -- now is saying expected to happen.
On that's a right of march 3 fourteen days away it's good to have been on thank you JD Gordon with a set of Washington.
DC as the counselor continues to Kuwait thank you sir thank.