Jeffrey LewisHobson Smacks Back Bush Nuclear Initiatives

Representative David Hobson (R-OH), chairman of the House Appropriations Energy and Water Subcommittee, eliminated almost $100 million worth of nuclear weapons related spending in the FY 2005 Appropriations Bill including:

  • $27.6 million for the Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator,
  • $ 9.0 million for research into low-yield nuclear warheads,
  • $29.8 million for the Modern Pit Facility, and
  • $30.0 million for enhanced nuclear test site readiness.

“We put the brakes on a number of new nuclear weapons initiatives,” Hobson said. “The NNSA needs to take a time-out on new initiatives until it completes a review of its weapons complex in relations to security needs, budget constraints and a (recently completed) new stockpile plan.”

This still has to survive conference, of course.

The best part: The Bush Administration’s recently announced stockpile reduction, which really wasn’t very impressive, was designed to create political support for these programs, which are much worse. As Linton Brooks, administrator for the National Nuclear Security Administration, told a conference call, “For some people, I think it will make it easier for us to go ahead [with programs like the Modern Pit Facility].”

Great thinking, Linton. Why don’t you try another cut and see how that turns out?