- The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation - http://blog.heritage.org -
Protect America: Address the Entitlement Problem Now
Posted By Michaela Dodge On May 16, 2012 @ 6:00 pm In Featured | Comments Disabled
“Provide for common defense” is a core constitutional obligation of the federal government. Yet entitlement spending is putting unsustainable  pressure on the defense budget.
In 1965, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security constituted 2.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) while defense made up 7.4 percent. The Office of Management and Budget estimates that entitlement spending will reach 9.7 percent of GDP in 2012 while defense will shrink to 4.5 percent—even after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are included. (article continued below chart)
The defense budget is further threatened from within by the growing costs of military health care, as the Pentagon has built a system that is increasingly  flawed.
The men and women who serve and have served in uniform and their families deserve quality health care. The Heritage Foundation’s Saving the American Dream Plan  provides a blueprint for military health care reform  that enables military personnel to enjoy the opportunity to tailor their benefits to match their individual circumstances while saving the Department of Defense at least $39.424 billion over five years.
As Heritage’s Baker Spring argues, the changes should :
The Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) makes it yet more difficult for the Pentagon to keep America safe. Caps on spending for national security and discretionary spending mandated by the law over the next 10 years translate into inadequate defense budgets  in the future. The BCA automatic sequestration cuts would hit defense hardest . (article continued below chart)
Congress, in cooperation with the Administration, should stop sequestration  to defense and reform military health care systems by making them defined-contribution plans while still honoring the government’s obligations to service members.
Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org
URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2012/05/16/protect-america-address-the-entitlement-problem-now/
URLs in this post:
 unsustainable: http://www.heritage.org/federalbudget/defense-entitlement-spending
 increasingly: http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2011/09/building-a-better-military-health-care-system
 Saving the American Dream Plan: http://savingthedream.org/about-the-plan/plan-details/
 military health care reform: http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2011/11/saving-the-american-dream-improving-health-care-and-retirement-for-military-service-members?query=Saving+the+American+Dream:+Improving+Health+Care+and+Retirement+for+Military+Service+Members+and+Their+Famili
 inadequate defense budgets: http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2011/12/an-unacceptable-squeeze-on-defense-modernization
 would hit defense hardest: http://www.heritage.org/federalbudget/budget-control-act
 stop sequestration: http://blog.heritage.org../2012/05/07/defending-defense-sequestration-must-be-stopped/
Copyright © 2011 The Heritage Foundation. All rights reserved.