David Walker: Cut Defense Spending Without Sacrificing National Security

The former Comptroller General on defense spending and the fiscal cliff.
3:00 | 08/29/12

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Transcript for David Walker: Cut Defense Spending Without Sacrificing National Security
We're joined now by David Walker the former comptroller general of the United States. A guy who knows the numbers and the math just as well as anyone of Paul Ryan has this reputation he knows the -- I want -- ask you -- you take is he's serious. About addressing the fiscal situation in this country does -- get a reputation just as the -- guys. Now he's serious questions. No -- and I have to make more prosperous and and that means primarily from renegotiate so crucial contract and do some -- spending and comprehensive tax reform that would generate more revenues. He recognizes a lot about the social insurance reforms and spending. But he hasn't recognized enough about the need to generate more revenues in unfortunately both parties are responsible for where we are. And it was gonna have to have some reference. Just for export numbers this guy as a -- in -- Block eyewitness -- Let's talk about that but -- clock ticking. The deficit that's building up over the course of. This conference is something. Out -- -- Well with the that day you. President George Walker Bush came into office. The debt -- was about five point six trillion dollars so it's gone from five point six trillion about sixty truly you know what. This really -- the problem. -- -- not comeback America initiative created new -- That is the US financial burden -- there. We're gonna fail -- when we start our national fiscal responsibility bus tour next Friday it's gonna start in over seventy trillion. And it's going up like ten million -- -- and by the way it's increased fifty trillion since 2000. So this is just. A part of the problem. And we really need to make progress excuse you expect from front. He's talking about this fiscal -- issue handle on these issues are -- the coming -- Defense cuts and that's something that congress that we deal that's gonna go. Reduction. We just -- -- across the board cuts in defense now you see of course this is coming. -- wedge issue on him. How does this -- interest as it is it. Republicans. On -- -- weakness. Defense cuts when you. Wear when it comes to deal. Well the truth is is that you don't want all these tax a cuts to expire and you don't want all this defense and other spending and capital watching the session. That's correct gone but -- but here's what's gonna have to happen OK we are gonna have reduced effects. And we can do without compromising national security I was on the defense -- -- -- -- official member for over eight years the Pentagon is a bloated bureaucracy. We still have too many places around the world we still need to reform -- -- tracking and compensation practices -- could go on and on. There's plenty of opportunities that you have to do an intelligent way. And wouldn't do it quickly and we -- -- across the board. That's not an intelligent so what happens with the physical plant are we gonna go off of it her or signifies something that -- things get done after the election only and a congress he wrote that's what happens in November I -- I think what we need to do is he is to allow some of these items to expire. We need to extend salaam and pay for them. But the big ticket items the things like. You know that the tax -- things like. The across the board sequester. Those are probably going to be deferred for about nine months to a year. -- combined with a common with a commitment to do a grand bargain we need to do a grand bargain next year we can't to a grand bargain next year. But that means tax reform that -- social insurance reforms that you can't do that in the lame -- frankly would be responsible to do. This election whoever wins -- we -- -- -- and that. Democrats witnessing -- -- and that it expects. Source the American people a lot smarter a lot of politicians realize -- They can handle the truth when they see the truth they know we've got serious problems. And they're willing to accept tough choices as long as they believe that it's fair. We're gonna have to significantly reduced spending over time we're gonna have to negotiate the social -- contract to save those programs. Faison those changes -- gonna have to engage capping its tax reform we're gonna have to have more revenues and it's a new four letter word in Washington it's called man. Math we got our math lesson here -- from Dave walker a former comptroller general of the United States thank you so much for vehicular should be -- -- --

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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