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Public Statements

Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2014

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. LAMBORN. I rise in opposition to this amendment. I object to where this money is being cut. The amendment would take another $50 million away from already low amounts for modernizing our nuclear stockpile. The President agreed several years ago that he would modernize our nuclear stockpile in order to secure ratification of the New START Treaty. Under that treaty, both Russian and U.S. forces are being reduced; but we have to modernize the force so that we maintain a credible deterrent with the remaining weapons after the reductions take place.

The President is not fully funding that obligation. That's troubling enough. This committee has lowered what the President recommended to an even lower level, and that's even more troubling. If we take this amendment for a further reduction, we're really getting into serious cuts.

The trouble with not modernizing our nuclear capability is that we will no longer have an effective deterrent. These weapons degrade over time. They lose their effectiveness and reliability. If we have allies who can't depend on our nuclear deterrent, what are they going to want to do? They're going to want to go out and start their own nuclear programs. Countries like Korea and Japan are already talking about that, by the way. Unless you want more nuclear proliferation in the world, you want the U.S. to maintain a serious and credible deterrent and have an effective nuclear arsenal.

So this amendment takes us in the wrong direction. It's not good strategically for the United States. It's not a good savings of money, and I would urge strong rejection of this amendment.

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