INHERENCY: NMD HAS NO BIG POLITICAL CONSTITUENCY
VOTERS DO NOT CARE ABOUT NATIONAL SECURITY AND NUCLEAR ISSUES
Richard J. Newman, U.S. News & World Report, October 18, 1999 SECTION: U.S. NEWS; Pg. 30 HEADLINE: Why missile politics is taking a right turn // ln-10-29-99-acs
But Cold War-style politics just doesn't sell like it used to, mainly because hardly anybody outside Washington cares about national security. Voters say education, health care, Social Security, and crime are their top concerns, with defense a virtual afterthought. In a recent Roper poll, only 2 percent of respondents said protecting the United States was the issue they most want presidential candidates to address.
MILITARY SPENDING NO LONGER HAS AN IMPORTANT POLITICAL CONSTITUENCY
Lawrence F. Kaplan, executive editor of the National Interest,
The Weekly Standard September 27, 1999: Pg. 13 HEADLINE: Who Now Loathes the Military?; Congressional Republicans claim to be pro-defense. Do they mean it? // ln-10/99-acs
Another reason for the Republican reversal on defense is politics. Today, with the exception of a few Southern states that host a disproportionately large number of military bases, the defense budget claims virtually no political constituency. And the same political currents that have siphoned funds out of the defense budget have equally distorted its substance. Responding to electoral rather than strategic imperatives, congressional Republicans routinely expend scarce defense dollars on schemes of dubious strategic worth, including civilian projects, obsolete production lines, and unneeded bases. And when they do attend to military requirements, they habitually do so as if the armed services comprised simply another GOP voting bloc -- attaching more importance to the crisis in military day care than to matters of weapons acquisition and modernization.