Sanders Welcomes Schumer’s Support for Effort to Cut Pentagon and Invest in Human Needs

WASHINGTON, July 8 – Today, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) welcomed Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer’s (D-N.Y.) support for his amendment to the annual National Defense Authorization Act, which has been guaranteed a floor vote during the week of July 20th. 

"Let me thank Sen. Schumer for his support for my amendment to cut the bloated $740 billion Pentagon budget by 10% and invest $74 billion in communities that have been ravaged by extreme poverty and mass incarceration," said Sanders on Twitter. “This amendment will begin to change our national priorities."

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"Proud I fought alongside Sen. Sanders to ensure we vote in July on his amendment to cut $740 billion defense budget by 10% and put [money] into priorities like health care, housing, childcare in communities with 25%+ poverty—including many communities of color," wrote Schumer. "I proudly support the amendment."

The amendment, cosponsored by Senators Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Representatives Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) and Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), would take $74 billion in annual savings from the Pentagon—exempting military salaries and health care—to create a domestic federal grant program managed by the Treasury Department to fund health care, housing, childcare and educational opportunities for cities and towns experiencing a poverty rate of 25% or more. Sanders’ amendment garnered the support of more than 60 national organizations fighting for economic, environmental, and racial justice, and peace.

Sanders added, “Let me also thank Sen. Schumer for securing a vote on my amendment during the week of July 20th. If there was ever a time to fundamentally change our national priorities, now is that time. Let’s cut the Pentagon budget and invest in healthcare and housing here at home."