Does Panetta nomination mean deeper defense cuts?

It is very probable that the nomination of Leon Panetta for Secretary of Defense signals an attempt to make much deeper cuts in defense spending than the approximately $800 billion over the next ten years that Obama and Gates have already proposed.The Hill: Panetta, whom President Obama will announce as his nominee on Thursday, will inherit a Pentagon that has completed a round of belt-tightening under Gates and is now getting ready for further cuts.Obama two weeks ago said he wanted to find another $400 billion in savings from defense spending over the next 12 years, something Gates was said to be resisting. Now Panetta will be the man charged with pushing those cuts through a reluctant Department of Defense.Shifting Panetta to DOD "probably means bigger cuts to the defense budget," said Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute."Secretary Gates was strongly committed to maintaining a robust defense posture, but Panetta will be more interested in getting along with the...(Read Full Post)