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Lawmakers: Cut $100 billion from US nuclear weapons and invest in science and education

Staff writer |
Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) introduced bicameral legislation that would cut $100 billion from the bloated nuclear weapons budget over the next decade.

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We should cure disease, not create new instruments of death. We should fund education, not annihilation.
The Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures (SANE) Act cuts specific nuclear weapons and related programs without harming national security. The United States spends more money on nuclear weapons than all other countries combined.

In the past three years, the budget for simply maintaining nuclear warheads and production facilities has seen a 16 percent increase.

"We are robbing America's future to pay for unneeded weapons of the past," said Senator Markey.

"As we debate the budget and Republicans rally around devastating cuts to Medicare, Head Start and investments in research and science, it makes no sense to fund a bloated nuclear arsenal that does nothing to keep our nation safe in the 21st century. We should cure disease, not create new instruments of death. We should fund education, not annihilation."

"Instead of spending this year’s budget debate focused solely on repealing defense spending caps, or stuffing excess Pentagon spending into the Overseas Contingency Operations account, Congress should instead be focusing on ways to extract more value and greater savings from existing programs," said Rep. Blumenauer.

The Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditures (SANE) Act will:

Reduce nuclear submarines from 14 to 8 and reduce the purchase of replacement submarines from 12 to 8 – saving $21 billion

Cancel construction of new nuclear weapons processing facilities – saving $21 billion

Defer development of new ICBMs and cut warhead life extension programs – saving $16 billion

Delay the new long range bomber and remove the nuclear mission from the F-35 – saving more than $34 billion

Reduce the B61 gravity bomb life extension program and cancel the development of a new air-launched cruise missile – saving $7 billion.

The SANE Act is co-sponsored by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Al Franken (D-Minn.).

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