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Four Percent for Freedom: Spend More on National Defense

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Publication Date: May 2007

Publisher(s): Heritage Foundation (Washington, D.C.)

Author(s): Baker Spring

Series: Executive Memorandum

Topic: Military and defense (Military equipment and weapons)

Keywords: National security; readiness; spending restraint; hollow force

Type: Brief

Coverage: United States


The Bush Administration's budget proposal shows the defense budget declining to 3.2 percent of GDP by 2012. Even with robust levels of economic growth, this too small to meet the nation's defense needs. Spending 4 percent of GDP on defense can provide for national security if it is combined with pro-growth economic policies that restrain spending and keep taxes low.