Petition statement to be delivered to The United States House of Representatives and The United States Senate

Cut Social Security & Veterans' Benefits? Cut the Pentagon Instead!

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Cut Social Security & Veterans' Benefits? Cut the Pentagon Instead!

To be delivered to The United States House of Representatives and The United States Senate

Petition Statement

Instead of cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits, Congress should cut the bloated Pentagon budget.
There are currently 37,800 signatures. NEW goal - We need 40,000 signatures!

Petition Background

President Obama has endorsed cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits by using the "chained CPI" to lower the cost-of-living adjustment. But the Congressional Budget Office says cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits in this way would only save the government $163 billion over ten years. There are much better ways for the government to save $163 billion, like cutting the bloated Pentagon budget. Urge President Obama and your representatives in Congress to cut the Pentagon budget instead of cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits.

Here are three easy ways to save $163 billion by cutting the bloated Pentagon budget:

1. End the war in Afghanistan. A rough estimate of the cost of deploying U.S. troops to Afghanistan is a billion dollars per thousand troops per year. If we withdraw 16,300 troops from Afghanistan and keep them out, that would save $163 billion over ten years.

2. Cut the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program. A recent estimate of the long-term cost of purchasing, operating and maintaining 2,457 F-35s is $1.5 trillion. [1] That's $610 million per plane. If we cut 267 planes - a little over 10% - that would save $163 billion.

3. Cut Pentagon contracting. Every year the Pentagon spends more than $360 billion purchasing goods and services from contractors. Service contractors can cost, on average, 2.94 times more than an average Pentagon civilian employee performing the same job. A crude estimate suggests that just by cutting Pentagon contracting by 7% and bringing the work in house, the Pentagon could save $163 billion over ten years. [2]

Cutting the Pentagon budget instead of Social Security and veterans' benefits isn't a wild idea - it's exactly what will happen if there there is no "grand bargain" budget deal. All we have to do to make sure the Pentagon budget is cut is prevent a deal that cuts Social Security and veterans' benefits.

Urge your representatives in Congress and President Obama to cut the Pentagon budget instead of cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits.

Here's three other actions you can take:

1. Write to Congress and the President, urging them to cut the Pentagon budget instead of Social Security and veterans' benefits:

http://www.justforeignpolicy.org/act/chained-cpi

2. Tell your Representative and Senators you'll support a primary challenge if they vote to cut Social Security and veterans' benefits:

http://pac.signon.org/sign/chained-cpi-for-every?source=c.url&r_by=1135580

3. Help fellow MoveOn members deliver these petitions against cutting Social Security and veterans' benefits on Thursday, April 25 to a local Congressional office:
http://civic.moveon.org/event/events/create.html?id=&action_id=317

References:
1. “Cut Social Security & Veterans' Benefits? Cut the Pentagon Instead!” Robert Naiman, Huffington Post, April 9, 2013, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-naiman/cut-social-security-veter_b_3040226.html
2. Ibid.

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