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AIA’s Melcher Hopes Hill Has ‘Moral Courage’ To Fund DoD & Rest Of Budget

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: The federal government needs to spend more money on civilian agencies like the State Department, NASA, and the FAA, not just defense, the aerospace industry’s top lobbyist said today, but there’s no reasoning with a portion of Congress that wants cuts at any cost. “There’s a part of Congress that’s suspicious of everything,” said… Keep reading →

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New AIA Prez Melcher Sets Big 2016 Goals: Bucks, Bombers & Beyond

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: “I’m optimistic,” said the new president of the powerful Aerospace Industries Association, David Melcher, looking ahead to 2016. That statement in itself is a departure from the often dire warnings of his predecessor, long-time AIA president (and former Breaking Defense contributor) Marion Blakey. “Who would have thought four months ago that Ex-Im bank would be reauthorized?”… Keep reading →

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HASC’s Wittman Rallies Republicans To Stop Sequester

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: The chairman of the House Armed Services readiness subcommittee, Rep. Rob Wittman, is strikingly optimistic about the chances for consummating the so-called grand bargain and ending the automatic budget cuts known as sequestration. When I buttonholed him after a Tuesday Defense Writers’ Group breakfast, Wittman went so far as to say that “I think there’s… Keep reading →

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AIA Keeps Slugging Away At Sequestration; Blakey Distances Group From Tax Rate Boost

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: Sequestration, sequestration, sequestration — that was the one note the Aerospace Industries Association struck over and over at its biggest annual public event. Flanked by AIA’s now-iconic clock counting down 27 days before the sequester destroys “two million jobs” (a disputed figure), President Marion Blakey declared: “I’m an optimist and we have to prevail.”… Keep reading →

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Delay Sequestration By Six Months; ‘We Need To Know What We’re Doing,’ Sez Sen. Feinstein

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


CAPITOL HILL [updated 12:40 with Feinstein, Inouye remarks and results of amendment vote]: Sequestration drama roiled an otherwise pro forma mark-up of the Senate’s defense appropriations bill this morning, with a precious flicker of bipartisanship over the need to avert the sequester soon overtaken by disagreement over the legalities of layoff notices. If the automatic… Keep reading →

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GOP Must Move On Revenues Or Sequester Happens: Sen. Murray

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: If Republicans don’t agree to a “balanced” deal that raises revenues, Democrats are willing to let sequestration strike on Jan. 2nd — and the Bush tax cuts expire on Dec. 31st — Sen. Patty Murray said this afternoon in a major escalation of Congress’s ongoing game of chicken. “If we can’t get … a… Keep reading →

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