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Congresswoman McCollum Receives Letter Calling Out Wasteful Pentagon Spending from Women State Legislators

April 9, 2012
Press Release

More than half of the women state legislators in Minnesota request a reduction in military spending in a letter presented to Congresswoman McCollum

For Immediate Release:                                                                                      

Contact: Rachel Wisch, Public Information Officer
Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND)
Phone: (781) 643-6740
Email: rwisch@wand.org

Contact: Maria Reppas, Communications Director
Office of Congresswoman Betty McCollum
Phone: (202) 225-6631
Email: maria.reppas@mail.house.gov

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Today at her district office, Congresswoman McCollum received a letter from more than half of the women state legislators of Minnesota that calls for a reduction in military spending. The letter was presented by Minnesota state Senators Sandy Pappas and Mary Jo McGuire and state Representative Phyllis Kahn.

“It is not acceptable for House Republicans to pass a “millionaires manifesto” that showers millionaires and billionaires with tax breaks and other benefits, and protect billions in oil company subsidies and wasteful Pentagon spending, while abandoning the middle class and local communities,” said Congresswoman McCollum. “Washington should be a partner for opportunity an economic growth for our entire country by investing in education, basic research, modern infrastructure and clean energy.”

The letter points out that military spending will comprise about 56 percent of the discretionary budget in the coming year, and that deeper cuts to other areas of the discretionary budget will do little to alleviate the federal deficit and cause catastrophic cuts to the social safety net. It also calls attention to the Pentagon’s lack of budgetary discipline and inability to conduct an audit. The letter was an initiative of the Women Legislator’s Lobby (WiLL), a national network of women state legislators who work together to influence federal policy and budget priorities, for which State Senator Sandy Pappas serves as vice president.

“Congresswoman McCollum has been a great ally in shining a light on wasteful, unnecessary Pentagon spending, and we want her to keep up that fight this year,” said Pappas. “We should spend what we need to keep our nation safe and secure, and we must support our troops. But we cannot afford to keep wasting money on things like an outdated excessive nuclear arsenal and weapons systems the Pentagon does not want or need. Scarce dollars can be better spent investing in programs that keep us economically secure; things like education, infrastructure, and health care.”

WiLL is a program of Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND), a national non-profit organization dedicated to empowering women to act politically to reduce violence and militarism, and redirect excessive military resources toward unmet human and environmental needs. In delivering this letter, WAND hopes to encourage Congresswoman McCollum’s work to reduce extreme military spending through her efforts on the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies, which has jurisdiction over the Department of Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and other relevant agencies.

About Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND)

WAND is a national non-profit organization dedicated to empowering women to act politically to reduce violence and militarism, and redirect excessive military resources toward unmet human and environmental needs. Founded in 1982, WAND is a recognized United Nations NGO. Over the years, WAND developed a variety of successful programs, and currently consists of a 501-C3 WAND Education Fund, a 501-C4 WAND Inc. Action Center for members and chapters, WAND Political Action Committee, and the Women Legislator's Lobby (WiLL) program. For more information, please visit www.wand.org.

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