National Guard Cuts

National Guard Cuts

As Obama prepares to release his budget plan next week all 50 governors signed a letter asking him to keep the Guard’s ranks at 350,000, instead of cutting it down to 335,000 as the Pentagon has suggested.

FOX NEWS reports: “The nation’s governors strongly oppose the potential cuts,” they wrote, after meeting with him and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel during their annual winter meeting last week in Washington. “For more than a decade, our National Guard has demonstrated it is a cost-effective, operational force that is critical to our national security at home and abroad.”

The concerns about National Guard cuts come on top of widespread concerns about the Pentagon’s controversial plan to shrink the active-duty Army. As Republican and Democratic lawmakers prepare to challenge these and other cuts on Capitol Hill, the governors are taking an early stand over the National Guard. If sequester cuts remain in place, the Guard’s ranks could dwindle even further, to 315,000 in 2016.

The proposed cuts to the Guard in fiscal 2015 are just part of the Pentagon’s efforts to reconfigure itself for the future, including cutting the active Army from 520,000 to between 440,000 and 450,000 soldiers.

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