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The Nation : Military Personnel to Be Exempt in Cuts

October 11, 1987

The Reagan Administration notified Congress it will exempt the military from personnel cuts under defense spending reductions required under the revised Gramm-Rudman balanced budget law. In a letter to House Speaker Jim Wright (D-Tex.), Budget Director James C. Miller III said the decision "is considered to be in the national interest . . . to defend our nation and to maintain the force levels required for our national security." Under Gramm-Rudman, federal spending would have to be cut by about $23 billion in fiscal 1988. The law says half of that amount would have to be absorbed by the Defense Department. However, a provision of the law gives the President the option of exempting military personnel accounts from the sequestration of funds required under the automatic budget cuts.

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