Sometime soon, within the next few days, a vote will happen in the Senate and House on the amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act to cut 10% of the Pentagon budget. The amendments have been introduced by Sen. Sanders in the Senate; and Reps. Barbara Lee and Mark Pocan in the House. Pax Christi USA signed onto a letter to Members of Congress in strong support of the proposed amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 that would reallocate 10 percent of the bloated Pentagon budget toward severely underfunded human needs priorities – many of which are more critical than ever as our country continues to confront the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is an unprecedented opportunity for change and to shape the public narrative on the Pentagon budget.
Our colleagues at Win Without War have set up this tracker where you can see where your Senator and Representatives stand on the amendment.
TAKE ACTION: We are asking Pax Christi USA members to call their Members of Congress (use the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121 where you can be connected to your Senator or Representative). Calls should be placed to each of your two senators and your representative, and once you reach their office, ask to speak to the staff member who is working on the Defense Budget. You can use the following short script below if you’d like:
As a member of Pax Christi USA committed to working for peace and cultivating the common good, I urge you to support the amendment from (for Senator’s office, reference Sen. Bernie Sanders; for Representative’s office, reference Rep. Barbara Lee) to the National Defense Authorization Act that will cut the FY 2021 Department of Defense budget by 10 percent and redirect those funds to programs that address critical human needs such as health care, nutrition, education, and environmentally sustainable housing and transportation. Please vote YES on this amendment!
(Feel free to add in your own personal messages addressing the importance of redirecting money from military spending to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, systemic racism, the climate crisis and other pressing issues.)
If you do not have time to make phone calls, you can contact your senators and representative by email through this link set up by our partners at the Sisters of Mercy Justice Team.
For a good study piece, read William Hartung’s “America needs a transformative foreign policy” which references the effort to cut the Pentagon budget.