Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) gave the keynote address at a Brookings Institution event examining the implications of sequestration and potential alternatives.
Pentagon officials have sounded the alarm on the impact of $500 billion in automatic budget cuts over a decade set to kick in January 2013. The cuts, referred to as sequestration, are the result of Congress being unable to agree on deficit reduction measures, and are on top of $487 in defense cuts already agreed to under the Budget Control Act.
Sen. Ayotte is leading Senate efforts to avoid the cuts. She serves as Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee.
The keynote address was followed by two panel discussions on the topic.
Participants included: Steve Bell, Senior Director of Economic Policy of the Bipartisan Policy Center; Ron Haskins, Co-Director Budgeting for National Priorities of the Center on Children and Families; David Worn Head, Palantir Technologies; Tom Davis, Vice President, Strategic Planning of General Dynamics; Mackenzie Eaglen, Resident Fellow of the Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies at the American Enterprise Institute; and Rebecca Grant, President of IRIS Independent Research.