In a press conference today addressing proposed cuts to defense spending, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., suggested that issues of national security should not be debated.
A budget agreement reached last year currently contains automatic across-the-board cuts to defense spending. According to the Associated Press, “the reductions — $50 billion in the first year and $492 billion over a decade — won’t kick in until January 2013, but lawmakers argued that Congress and the Obama administration can’t wait months to deal with the issue and leave it to a lame-duck session in December.”
Today, Rubio and a handful of other Republicans held a press conference to put political pressure on the president and Congress to restore funding to Department of Defense.
“This is not something to play with,” Rubio said. “You don’t play a game of chicken with our national defense, especially when it comes to the United States. The military power of the United States has made the world a better and safer place.”
He also suggested that national defense was not only off limits when it comes to budget cuts, but that national security should not even be up for debate.
“There are a lot of other things we can debate about,” he said. “There are a lot of other issues we can disagree on. There are plenty of other issues we can have political wrangling over. Our national security should not be one of them.”
Rubio has been critical of federal spending on almost everything except defense. Last year, he co-sponsored a bill that would reduce the federal workforce by 10 percent by 2015.
You can watch his speech at today’s press conference below: