Preparing for a Deep Defense Drawdown
October 18, 2012
The Budget Control Act of 2011, enacted in August 2011, mandated caps on national security and domestic spending totaling $1 trillion over 10 years and created a sequester mechanism imposing another $1.2 trillion over 9 years if triggered (on January 2, 2013) by Congress’s failure to reach a bipartisan solution via a “super committee” process by the end of 2011 or a “grand bargain” compromise. The total bill for the Department of Defense is $487 billion in FY2012–FY2021 and $475 billion in FY2013–FY2021. This would bring the defense budget top line from its post-9/11 peak of $735 billion (in constant FY2013 dollars) to $510 billion, which is a 31 percent decline and comparable to past drawdowns of 33 to 43 percent.