Tuberville, SASC Republicans Respond to President Biden’s Inadequate Defense Budget

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Tommy Tuberville (R-AL) and Republican members of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) have made it clear — President Biden’s fiscal year 2023 defense budget is inadequate. Prior to President Biden releasing his budget proposal, Senator Tuberville joined every Republican member of the Senate and House Armed Service in urging the President to increase the defense budget by 5 percent above inflation to meet growing threats to U.S. national security. President Biden’s defense budget provides just 1.5 percent real growth using an inflation estimate Sen. Inhofe described as “almost certainly low.” 

Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.): “President Biden’s budget ignores reality and shortchanges our men and women in uniform. The president’s budget proposal, accounting for inflation, cuts our defense budget at a time when real growth is needed. We cannot ask our military to choose between maintenance and modernization or investment and deterrence. But that’s exactly what the president’s budget proposal does.”

Ranking Member Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.): “President Biden’s defense budget reflects the world he wishes for — but not the world as it is. You simply can’t look at the world around us now and think this budget is adequate to confront all the threats we face, let alone to accelerate our attempts to maintain or restore deterrence and secure U.S. interests for our children and grandchildren. Most problematic is that this budget neglects to sufficiently account for historic inflation. I am particularly concerned about service members losing buying power, just like all American families… Real growth — 5 percent above inflation — is what we need if we are to meet this moment. We must do more to change the military balance of power in the next five years.”

Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.): “…Our top military brass from all branches are wisely asking for more. More ships, more planes, more weapons, more satellites, and more training. But President Biden is instead providing them less to complete their mission. This is strategically unsound and could increase the risk of future conflicts and threats to our country. This moment demands decisiveness and strength through a sustained increase in defense spending. We will ensure that America meets that moment, even if the Commander-in-Chief has other priorities.”

Sen. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Strategic Forces: “For the second year in a row, the President has proposed a budget that dramatically increases spending on domestic initiatives, while defense spending fails to even keep pace with inflation. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine proves our adversaries are increasingly willing to use force to pursue their hegemonic ambitions. Meanwhile, China’s expanding military capabilities – highlighted by its nuclear breakout – demonstrates threats to our interests are growing at a rapid pace. At a time of unprecedented geopolitical turmoil, the need for real growth in the defense budget is clear.”

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities: “As America’s enemies are on the march and the world has become a much more dangerous place under his watch, President Biden now wants to flatten our defense budget. Biden’s budget moves us in the wrong direction, reflecting his doctrine of appeasement that’s led to a disaster in Afghanistan and an emboldened Putin in Russia. We should be bolstering our military right now to protect America and show our leadership in the world, and his proposal falls well short.”

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support: “As I’ve said many times before, we are in a new era of authoritarian aggression. The President needs to go back to the drawing board and craft a defense budget that leaves no question as to whether American men and women in uniform are well-trained, equipped and ready to respond to a threat wherever it emerges. If he does not, he can expect yet another broadly-bipartisan rebuke from Congress as we remedy the administration’s dangerous funding shortfall.”

Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Seapower: “President Biden needs to put a serious budget proposal forward to confront the real threats we face. Russia is just one reason why defense spending needs to be higher. China and other nations are watching the seriousness and resolve of freedom-loving nations.”

Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.): “As Russia wages war on Ukraine and threatens the West, North Korea is launching ballistic missiles and Communist China plans an invasion against Taiwan, President Biden is choosing weakness over strength. At a time when the United States should be bolstering our defense spending, Joe Biden’s latest pathetic spending request does not keep up with the inflation crisis he has caused — effectively cutting defense spending and leaving our country in a vulnerable position. Biden’s raging inflation crisis is hurting America in every way possible and with threats around the world growing every day, we cannot afford more weakness.”

Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.): “President Biden’s budget will force cuts to key nuclear capabilities, at a time when Russia is threatening nuclear war. Russia, China, North Korea and Iran only understand peace through strength. We must provide our military the resources they need to defend and protect our freedom.”

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.): “President Biden’s defense budget fails to provide America’s military with the resources needed to deter an imperial China no less deal with other challenges, many of them created by this Administration’s incompetence. Now is the time to invest in our defenses so we can prevent war and keep Americans safe.”

Senator Tommy Tuberville represents Alabama in the United States Senate and is a member of the Senate Armed Services, Agriculture, Veterans’ Affairs, and HELP Committees.