Pelosi: Defense Pork Shouldn't Be Exempt From Spending Freeze
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reiterated on Thursday that pork-laden Pentagon programs shouldn't be protected from President Obama's proposed three-year spending freeze -- a position that the White House distanced itself from on Wednesday after Pelosi made comments to that effect in an interview with Politico.
"While we all want to support our men and women in uniform... and our national defense and our veterans, I don't think that we should protect military contractors, and I want to make that distinction very clear," Pelosi said at her weekly press conference Thursday.
The government can't minimize wasteful spending without auditing the Pentagon, Pelosi said, citing a 2009 report indicating that top U.S. weapons programs went over budget by some $296 billion.
"I don't support exempting them from the freeze," she said. "So I think there has to be a bifurcation in terms of: we support our military and their families and we want them to have everything they need, but we do not support an entitlement program for overruns on the part of a military contractor."