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  • Morning Bell: National Security Shouldn't Be For Sale

    The Washington Post reports this morning that the fate of a lame duck vote on New START rests on just one man: Senator Jon Kyl (R–AZ). According to the Post’s sources, other Republicans in Congress have “kind of delegated” New START to Kyl, meaning that if the Obama Administration wins his vote, the nine total Republican votes needed to reach 67 votes would be easy to find. That is why the White House dispatched General Kevin Chilton to Arizona last Friday, and it is why Defense Secretary Robert Gates is scheduled to meet with Kyl later this week.

    In what the Post describes as a “high-octane lobbying” campaign, Gates has already offered Kyl an extra $4 billion in spending on nuclear programs in exchange for his vote. This is on top of the existing $10 billion Administration pledge. This deal is bad policy and deplorable politics.

    First of all, the White House has no standing to make this offer. Most of the proposed spending is in the out years beyond President Obama’s term, and the White House does not pass budgets; Congress does. How can any conservative take a White House promise for future funding on faith before the 2012 budget has been written? Instead, the White House has demanded a vote in the lame duck—before even the 2011 budget is approved. Second, the Obama Administration is not drawing this $4 billion from their own domestic priorities; they are shifting it from other defense priorities. The bottom line is that this deal, even if followed through, would just weaken the military elsewhere.

    And all this money isn’t going to real nuclear modernization. Remember, President Obama’s goal is to reduce the number of our nuclear weapons to zero, not build new ones. That is why the billions in “modernization” are actually being dumped into federal labs and universities without spelling out a clear military mission for their activities. And there are other problems with the treaty as well. The verification measures are completely inadequate, and the treaty places restrictions on U.S. missile defense options in at least five areas.

    Treaties such as New START require more scrutiny than others. The Senate needs access to the negotiating record that includes all draft versions of New START, memoranda, notes, and communications between U.S. and Russian negotiators. This record is critical to clear up questions on key provisions in the treaty and, specifically, how the Russians interpret them. The Senate is constitutionally mandated to give due diligence in its consideration of New START. This responsibility is not consistent with the rushed process the White House is seeking.

    But most importantly, if this $4 billion is needed to maintain our nuclear arsenal, then it is needed to maintain our nuclear arsenal. Conditioning funding for an effective nuclear deterrent on New START is playing politics with our national security. Earlier this month the American people sent an unequivocal message to Washington that business as usual must stop. Ratifying New START in a lame duck session on the back of a $4 billion payout would be a clear rejection of that message.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    48 Responses to Morning Bell: National Security Shouldn't Be For Sale

    1. George Colgrove, VA says:

      “And all this money isn’t going to real nuclear modernization. Remember, President Obama’s goal is to reduce the number of our nuclear weapons to zero, not build new ones. That is why the billions in ‘modernization’ are actually being dumped into federal labs and universities without spelling out a clear military mission for their activities.

      . . .

      “But most importantly, if this $4 billion is needed to maintain our nuclear arsenal, then it is needed to maintain our nuclear arsenal. Conditioning funding for an effective nuclear deterrent on New START is playing politics with our national security. “

      If the $4 billion will not be put towards Nuclear Arsenal Modernization it should be returned to the taxpayer, it is clear the DoD was able to find expenditures to eliminate in order to cut this amount from their budget for the deal– above and beyond the $100 billion they are already supposed to cut. We need to know where this money is coming from and evaluate the importance of these functions to the defense mission. If they are to be kept – return the money to that function. If the functions can be cut and the money will be wasted anyway – send it back to the taxpayers.

      “This deal is bad policy and deplorable politics.” Yes! And a show of how the federal government can find significant sums of money from waste to just end up wasting elsewhere. Moreover, it shows that the DoD is just another federal department that at the president’s whim will sell out this country and the military– it is supposed to defend and support.

    2. Roger Brokaw, Boelus says:

      Kyle is the type of Republican that makes Conservatives angry. Its all about power and personal ego. Look at the people he supported in the Primary. He has no core values. Who are the other Republican fools that will help him sell our national security down the drain.

    3. Doug, Washinton Stat says:

      Take out our nuclear deterrant? This world is not safe. I don't trust the old warsaw pact, and for darn sure don't trust Iran. Mr. President, are you off your nut? For goodness sake, you've screwed up the nation. Don't kill us, too!

    4. Gene McCarthy says:

      Stand firm Senator Kyle. Do not give in. The American people are watching and we vote.

    5. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      The new START treaty reminds me of the Munich Pact which had been signed by the

      guarantors of Czechoslovakia's independence___the United Kingdom, France, Fascist Italy, and the Soviet Union___72 years ago. In the end, Hitler got what he wanted, the Sudeten Land, and eventually, all of Czechoslovakia, with the exception of the Nazi puppet state of Slovakia. Hitler literally wore Czech President Emil Hacha down so that he signed away his country's freedom under duress. As you know, anything signed under duress isn't legal under national, and international, law. After signing the worthless Munich Pact, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain returned to Britain and announced: "We now have peace in our time." By September 1, 1939, it became the peace of the grave. Is the new START treaty appeasement?

      I don't know but if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck,

      then it's a duck. That, my friend, is the duck test, and the new START treaty passes it.

    6. Spiff, USA says:

      It's not only the Russians who we should be concerned about, it's the countries who have nuclear capability but whose leaders cannot control the urge for more power even if it means a retaliatory strike would destroy their country and all it's people!

      Spiff

    7. Jim Delaney says:

      I can't imagine why Kyl and his Republican cohorts would capitulate on something as dangerous to our national security as START. But, the awful truth is GOP establishment types are corruptible. Promises of $ rather than national security too often rule their conscience. I hope Heritage readers who are Kyl's constituents will flood his office with calls. Some well-placed calls to McConnell might also help. Prayer alone and common sense don't seem to be enough these days to get these guys to do what is honorable and right for the country. Very, very unsettling.

    8. Ben C. Ann Arbor, MI says:

      The above is the tip of the ice berg. The University of Michigan is providing the Chinese with military technology that could someday be used against the United States. Professor Kaufman has done all he can to spotlight the problem and has extensive documentation to this end. This is a very serious problem that should not be dismissed. Professor Kaufman was virtually fired from his position (he retired instead) for refusing to lecture to Chinese engineers on Trident Missle technology. Remember when we thought Iran was our friend? It was during the regime of the Shah that Iranian engineering students attended the U of M and learned how to build a nuclear bomb. Professor Kaufman was on campus and has documnetation to this effect. Hopefully the next Congress will address this problem. Hopefully.

    9. S. J. Miller, Arizon says:

      Didn't we hear Senator McConnell announce yesterday that he would join the earmark ban? Kyl wasn't there to let us know of his "opting out."

      What will the $4 billion for Kyl be called? Like the Cornhusker Kickback and the Louisiana Purchase? Truly shows that bribes and payoffs are bi-partisan–they span both sides of the aisle.

    10. Pat-San Antonio says:

      This is an outrage. THis administration will stop at nothing to diminish our capabilitiy to protect this country from those that wish to do us harm. I am appalled at the sneaky and underhanded manner that is used to get their way. What have we become?

    11. James A Glasscock says:

      If Jon Kyl betrays America on this vote and accepts a bribe to do so, I hope the voters of Arizona do not forget come his next election. Benedict Arnold was an honorable man compared to any anti-American, including the Obama Clan.

    12. Judith in Michigan says:

      Apparently, Washington DC, and this administration in particular, did not listen closely to the American electorate. They never intended to.

      HF states that the White House has no standing in making this offer of billions for nuclear programs and the proposed spending would go beyond Obama's term.

      Is it possible that this WH intends to change the rules of who dictates spending and even doing away with presidential term limits?

      Check out an excellent column in today's Opinion section of the WSJ .It is "Obama's Air Guitar" by Bret Stephens. It lays out the dangers that are rapidly expanding world-wide and the weaknesses of the US. It's frightening. America and the entire world cannot afford for the US to be weak.

      The terms of the START treaty are bad enough and place the US in a very dangerous position,, but the politics involved are a prime example of the corruption in DC

      If Senator Kyl and any other senator falls for this gambit , it is nothing short of criminal and should be handled as such.

    13. John Starnes 500 Dea says:

      If the gentleman from Arizona, Senator Kyl, did not get the recent message from a few million of "the people", would someone from the mourning bell please enlighten him just how close he is from being "turned inside out". This is just the stuff that we have had quite enough of.

    14. Tony, Brick, NJ says:

      Agreed.

    15. randydutton says:

      Will Kyl accept bribery or not? And if so, start looking for a replacement – he has to go.

    16. Claudia- CA says:

      This should not even be on Kyl's radar! If he goes for this pig-in-a-poke, I pray he will never again be elected to "serve" the citizens! Keep it real, John Kyl!

    17. Doc Hilliard, Califo says:

      It ought not be a shock yo learn Mr Obama, using other peoples money, is trying to make Sen. Kyl an offer he cannot refuse.

    18. KC - New Mexico says:

      What a typical political shame – buying the vote! This must stop. START does not help this country remain strong. We need strong leadership in the administration and in Congress that will stand up to the rest of the world. At least President Regan had some guts along with President Bush after 9-11. I doubt if President Obama would know what to do after giving away our strength as a country – defense and the economy. He has not taken away the will of most Americans!

    19. Russ, Cleveland TN says:

      Thanks for the info. Yes, our country's security should not be bargained away by compromisers.

      A great fact is that all Treaties promoted by this Administration should be voted down. The Start Treaty, The Small Arms Treaty being promoted by Hillary and the State Dept/ UN is a disaster for American Security and Freedom. All treaties promoted by these people do nothing but damage to America.

      We need our lawmakers to open their eyes and save our nation before its too late.

    20. Bob Uda, San Marcos, says:

      Senator Jon Kyl,

      If you make a deal with the devil (Obama), your career will go down in flames at the next time you are up for election. So help us God. You will be history if you take any of our taxpayers money for your stupid earmarks and pork barrel projects in Arizona. Do the right thing, senator.

      Bob Uda

    21. Val Bloomville, NY says:

      It's these goings on that have to be stopped, If this John Kyl is for sale he doesn't belong in the Senate, wake up America.

    22. Rick74 says:

      Are you providing this article to Senator Kyl?

      As a banner across the doorway to his Senate office?

    23. charlie says:

      Once again obama tries to hog-tie our natiaonl defense, weaken our greatest deterant and leave our enemies a blank check to do what they want. Obama is making good on his promise to change the "fabric of the country' translation..weaken the country until our enemies are irristability tempted to attack us. God help us until this idiot can be removed one way or the other.

    24. Wayne, Columbia, SC says:

      This is nothing but buying votes at the expense of other needed defense department programs. Is Sen. Kyl up for bid? Will he let the Administration buy his vote?! Sen. kyl must stand up for conservative values and our national defense. This is nothing more than another damnable "earmark" to buy votes. Congress is a house of laws not a house of whores. Shame on Sen. Kyl if he takes the bribe and double shame on the Administration for taking our hard earned money to buy votes for a bill that will certainly result in the diminishing of America's defense capabilities. This is the lowest kind of politics.

      One Nation under God! Amen.

    25. Peggy, Massillon, OH says:

      The sad reality is that if Kyl accepts this bribe for his vote, the people of AZ will continue to elect him. Too many voters will only see that Kyl brought home the bacon for AZ. They will say it is necessary for their continued economic health and well being. Other senators who may take similar bribes will be tarred by AZ residents as earmark abuse. This double standard is why nothing gets changed in D.C. Promises are made during campaigns then after election, the back peddling begins. Let's see how much influence the voters in AZ exert on their erstwhile senator Kyl.

    26. Lloyd Welch in Carol says:

      I know this is off topic, but yesterday evening I read a comment that I have to answer and it was too late or for some reason my comment wasn't accepted so I am here today to answer this stupidity with reason. A person who identified himself as Ken suggested that conservatives wanted Obama to fail because he is black. Let me say that this is the most ridiculous comment by far I have ever read. No one in their right mind wants this country or its leaders to fail. We (I) want this country to prosper regardless of what race the president is or ever will be. I didn't vote for Obama because as far as I am concerned it didn't take a rocket scientist to figure out he was not qualified to hold the office of president or any other office that required experience to hold. I somehow knew he would lead us into double digit unemployment,double or even triple the national debt, put our national security at risk, and lead this nation down a path of socialism. I was not surprised when he called us his enemies,when he invited every nation in the world to enter into a law suit against Arizona, open our borders to every terrorist in the world to enter at their leisure but to even suggest that I or any one else WANTED all this to happen is not only ridiculous but moronic. This goes well beyond playing the race card it is plainly playing the idiot card.

    27. Judith in Michigan says:

      Apparently, Washington DC, and this administration in particular, did not listen closely to the American electorate. They never intended to.

      HF states that the White House has no standing in making this offer of billions for nuclear programs and the proposed spending would go beyond Obama's term.

      Is it possible that this WH intends to change the rules of who dictates spending and even doing away with presidential term limits?

      Check out an excellent column in today's Opinion section of the WSJ .It is "Obama's Air Guitar" by Bret Stephens. It lays out the dangers that are rapidly expanding world-wide and the weaknesses of the US. It's frightening. America and the entire world cannot afford for the US to be weak.

      The terms of the START treaty are bad enough and place the US in a very dangerous position, but the politics involved are a prime example of the corruption in DC

      If Senator Kyl and any other senator falls for this gambit , it is nothing short of criminal and should be handled as such.

    28. Jerry Driskell says:

      If Kyle is really smart, he will hold out for more. Why trash your integrity for a mere 4 billion when you can sell it for maybe 8 billion ?

    29. rhurt, California says:

      Why hasn't the Foundation and other groups contacted this Republican Senator-reminding him that the entire country and the Republican party has voted to stop earmarks. This Senator needs to be reminded that he will stand alone and probably be the target for anti-earmarks America-about 69% of the people. Please send the word in no uncertain terms to this Senator-comply by not accepting Obama's bribe-or be the target of Conservative voters.

    30. Bill , California on says:

      Stop this before it can go any further. Sen. Kyl be strong and do not selll out to a corrupt administration. America is WATCHING.

    31. Douglas Rooks, Alaba says:

      Contact Senator Kyl

      http://kyl.senate.gov/contact.cfm

      Tell Kyl to hold firm against this opprobrious political maneuver. Let him know the people are watching.

    32. wallyblu, Zion IL says:

      If this was any good for America, Obama wouldn't be pushing it.

    33. wally, Zion IL says:

      If this was good for America Obama wouldn't be pushing it.

    34. Wayne, Columbia, SC says:

      This effort of the Administration to "buy" votes for an ill-conceived bill is contemptable, low blow to the American system of government. The $4 billion offered to Sen. Kyl is our hard earned tax money being used to advance the Administration's adverse agenda. Shame on you Sen. Kyl if you cave and double shame on the Administration for stooping so low as to bribe legislators to pass ill-conceived legislation.

    35. Pingback: ADF Alliance Alert » Senate’s ratification of START hinges on Kyl’s vote: Is the Administration trying to buy it?

    36. Uncle Philsie says:

      Isn't this great let's buy the vote with taxpayer dollars. When will these clowns do something just on it's merit or because it is a detriment to the USA? No, they must be paid off to do anything.

    37. Daezy, Santa Cruz says:

      Unconscionable! and I just emailed Senator Kyl.

      Love my Morning Bell, and God bless the Heritage Foundation.

    38. Jim Brady says:

      The Senator should know that more and more Americans are turning off their televisions and are instead watching him and his colleagues-closely.Chicago street tactics will not be accepted as a substitute for doing what is best for our country.

    39. Lester Olson, RI says:

      Obama is no RR. I hope thid piece was sent to Sen. Kyl!

    40. John says:

      why do you call them a Tea Party when they are REPUBLICANS. Did the Tea party register as a party? or still as Republicans? The people who win the race are still REPUBLICANS. Ron Paul is still a Republicans.

      If debt is so bad, why didn't the Tea group oppose them when Bush and the Republicans spent freely?

      How many in here think we should cut subsidies to the farmers?

    41. Janiece, Texas says:

      This is disgusting and exactly the thing that has to be STOPPED in this country if we are going to survive. Has it ever occurred to anyone that if we can afford to throw billions at this one and that one and heave millions and even billions to foreign governments that despise us for no more reason that our support for Israel, then our tax burden is entirely TOO heavy.

      Since Obama has thrown Israel under the bus, those governments still despise; is there an explanation for that???

    42. Kari, Texas says:

      @John-

      Not all Tea Party members are Republicans-there are Independents and Democrats involved as well. "Tea Party" was adopted with respect to the Boston Tea Party, which was in essence a revolt against taxation without representation-sound familiar? Also, any true conservative did not support the last few years of spending under the Bush administration, as evidenced by the ousting of the RINO's (Republicans-in-name-only) in the recent elections. The Tea Party did not exist during the Bush administration, that is why "it" did not oppose the spending per se,; however, there are many that joined the Tea Party because of this, among other, reasons.

    43. roni, omaha ar says:

      I would like to see a list of those who shirked their responsibility to Kyle, do they not want to answer to their constituants. They need to step up and vote and answer for their actions.

    44. Kendall Svengalis, N says:

      John is a clueless and incoherent lib looking for signs of hypocrisy. Yes, we should cut farm subsidies to farmers as well as all forms of waste. The Tea Party is the conscience of the Republican Party, not its mirror. Millions of conservatives opposed spending under Bush and we are now in the process of purging the party of this profligacy, witness what will ultimately become an earmark ban. Moreover, recent polls reveal that even 49% of Democrats support Tea Party principles, as well as 90% of Republican and 70% of Independents. The Tea Party has gotten America off the blind adherence to party over principle and this is an enormously good thing. And for John's information, the Tea Party did not emerge as an organized force until after Obama's inauguration. Republicans spent freely, but it paled in comparison to that of the Obamanation who believes in massive income redistribution. Obama is a threat to our Constitutional Republic, never having believed in its principles in the first place.

    45. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      In the 2010 election the Progressives had the capacity to fix five elections in the Senate. In 2012 they will probably increase their clandestine efforts to fix ten Senate elections (see George Soros' Secretary Of States program 'SOS.') This really isn't funny, folks! Billions of the public money is going to go for the election of Progressives (and be denied to Conservatives).

      This earmark for AZ will cost more than the $4 Billion, and Democrats will continue to say "Oh! Earmarks are such a small part of the Budget!" And the RINOs will continue to say "This is how we are supposed to get money for things for our State." And it is laughable to buy Kyl with money they can't promise! (legally, that is) No, my friends, they can even give away American Sovereignty with earmarks. 'Nuf said.

    46. John says:

      lol…I am incoherent because you guys are hypocrite.

      "The Tea Party won a major victory yesterday when Senator Mitch McConnell (R–KY) agreed to an earmark ban."

      Dont' forget the 2 years TEMPORARY BAN. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2010/nov/19/fact-check
      Let me see, if Obama is a one term president which is very likely, the earmark will be in full effect again after 2 years…lol

      "The Tea Party is the conscience of the Republican Party, not its mirror. " & "And for John’s information, the Tea Party did not emerge as an organized force until after Obama’s inauguration."

      -funny how the conscience become MUTED when pres. Bush and the Republicans raised the DEBT ceiling. Did the conscience hide under the rock? Did you make the news protesting the spending? Right, when the Republicans spent like crazy the Tea Party conscience was SHUT up or was it on vacation?
      http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/arti
      By Jonathan Weisman and Shailagh Murray

      Tuesday, May 9, 2006

      A $2.7 trillion budget plan pending before the House would raise the federal debt ceiling to nearly $10 trillion, less than two months after Congress last raised the federal government's borrowing limit.

      Quote "Republicans spent freely, but it paled in comparison to that of the Obamanation who believes in massive income redistribution."

      Let me see, income distributions? I know some of you speak like a parrot but for the longest time income has concentrated for the top riches? upward and concentrated, screw the middle class. If you like that then give me your money. I can always take more. And when the pendulum swing to give more money to the top 1% then it needs to swing the other way.

      Permanent tax cut will destroy the nation? But I'd bet you don't care right Mister Tea Party?
      http://www.forexlive.com/146238/all/moodysif-tax-

      And for the one who are mathematically challenge and like to repeat like a parrot, please direct your brain to look up the cbo historical table on page 353. You'll see the government receipts are DOWN from 2001-2004 as the Republicans passed the TAX CUT twice. I guess tax cut aren't increase the revenues as the Republicans been lying eh. And as the receipts/GDP, 2001 is was 29.5. With all the tax cuts and such it becomes 27.8. Do you even know how to find the cbo website?

      http://www.wistv.com/Global/story.asp?S=1895905
      (Columbia) May 27, 2004 – Several South Carolina lawmakers were outraged Thursday when Governor Mark Sanford carried two piglets under his arms to the House chamber to protest fast action by representatives to override his budget vetoes.

      The Republican-controlled House took only about two hours Wednesday to vote to override all but one of Sanford's 106 budget vetoes with little debate.

      with all the news about the banks use robo-signed to foreclose on houses they don't even own but the Republicans still vote to give the banks more power to scam people. after 3-4 years now, what did the Republicans come up to curtail the banks and their fraud? NOTHING that's what.
      http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=172452

      I believe in balance the budget but for a bunch of hypocrite spenders to act like the care, it's a biggest joke!! and please stop calling yourself a Tea Party. You AREN'T a party. You are Republicans. You voted Republicans. It's like a black caucus of the Democrat side calling themselves Black Party. You are still a bunch of spenders hypocrites that you have always been!!

      And for the red Tea Party, your states are in the red on spending just like every blue states so you should tend to your states first before you speak of others
      http://s.wsj.net/public/resources/documents/st_ST

    47. John says:

      How many times they voted to bump the debt ceiling? Fiscal conservatives? I'd REALLY REALLY like to see the protest from the Heritage Foundation back then. Did you make a lot of noises back then?

      Another Possible Bump to the Debt Ceiling

      By Jonathan Weisman and Shailagh Murray

      Tuesday, May 9, 2006

      With passage of the budget, the House will have raised the federal borrowing limit by an additional $653 billion, to $9.62 trillion. It would be the fifth debt-ceiling increase in recent years, after boosts of $450 billion in 2002, a record $984 billion in 2003, $800 billion in 2004 and $653 billion in March. When Bush took office, the statutory borrowing limit stood at $5.95 trillion.

    48. Vinny, Dallas says:

      Dear CC aka Lunatic,

      What do you suggest. Returning to coldwar and build another 50,000 nukes and leave Russians free to do whatever they fancy. Guess they will be quite forthcoming when it comes to Nuke issues over Iran or DPRK?

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