Defense Budget Cuts of $45 Billion Seen by Pentagon

January 7, 2013

The Pentagon faces a reduction of as much as $45 billion this fiscal year if automatic spending cuts take effect March 1, its comptroller said.

That level would be 27 percent less than the $62 billion in reductions the Pentagon would have confronted if the automatic cuts known as sequestration had begun last week as scheduled,Robert Hale told an audience at the Brookings Institution inWashington today.

President Barack Obama signed a last-minute budget deal on Jan. 2 that averted tax increases for most U.S. workers and delayed for two months the across-the-board spending cuts in defense and other programs. Hale said today that the legislation also eased some terms of the defense cuts for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30.

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