Big Government a Greater Threat to U.S. Security Than China's Modern Weaponry, Lawmaker Asserts
“I fear that threat, of an America that starts to look at the government as their mother and their big brother, far more than I’m concerned about high-speed Chinese missiles,” Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo., said Jan. 12 at the Surface Navy Association's annual symposium in Arlington, Va.
But cutting the size the government doesn't mean it's OK to cut the defense budget, Akin said in a speech. Although Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced plans to proposed a five-year budget that shows modest growth, Akin nevertheless blasted the administration for shortchanging defense. “We can’t do the foolish thing that has been proposed lately … to cut defense and not cut anything else and take the money from defense and stick it into more entitlements and more welfare and more spending,” he said.
The government cannot continue to be the “sugar daddy” for the American people. “That’s not the essential function of the federal government,” Akin said. “The more we start to look … at the concept that it is the job of the federal government to take care of everybody, the more we become like many of the Third World countries of the world, or even like the European countries that are struggling with budgets that can’t work.” Money would be better spent on military needs, he asserted.
“We must fund national security,” said Akin, who is the new chairman of the House Armed Services Committee’s seapower and expeditionary forces subcommittee. “While we want to get the budget under control, our attitude cannot be that we’re just going to cut a percentage off of everything.”
“I don’t like the idea of cutting the defense budget because I think we can’t afford to do that,” he told reporters after the speech.
Akin, however, acknowledged that his powers to shape the budget are severely curtailed. Congress has many fiefdoms and its budgeting structure is broken, he said. To fix the problem, Congress needs a dramatic overhaul. “Let’s nuke all the committees and redefine how the budget needs to work,” he said.