In a speech centering on U.S. foreign policy choices, Donald Trump on Wednesday proposed an end to statutory budget limits on the military, setting out plans for a defense buildup that he says would be paid for by finding savings elsewhere in the federal budget and inside the Pentagon.
“We will rebuild our military,” Trump declared in Philadelphia, though he made clear that the armed services would not get a blank check if he ends the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration.
“I will ask the Congress to fully offset the cost of increased military spending,” the GOP nominee said.
“The military bureaucracy will have to be trimmed down,” Trump added, as he also said the federal government should reduce staffing levels across the government, all in a bid to bolster the size of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.
In his speech, Trump said the military would see more money across the services, as he vowed to “fully eliminate” the defense sequester:
Trump did not give out a number for how large he wants the defense budget to be in a Trump Administration; Republicans in the House supported a $517 billion defense budget for 2017.
In his speech, Trump also repeatedly took aim at Hillary Clinton, arguing that Clinton’s basic reaction to world events is to deploy the U.S. military no matter what.
“There wasn’t a country in the Middle East that Hillary Clinton didn’t want to invade, intervene in or topple,” Trump said, labeling Clinton an “absolute failure” during her time as Secretary of State.
“She’s trigger happy, and very unstable,” Trump added to applause from the audience.