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Bill Bradley on Homeland Security


Make post-Cold War choices: pay personnel, not for bases

The military’s mission is simple: to fight and win the nation’s wars. It must be capable of dealing quickly and decisively with threats to American territory as well as to regional peace and stability. These days, we’re often called to do more than that. Unless we upgrade our standard of living in the military and offer more opportunities for training, we’ll lose out in our efforts to recruit talented men and women into our armed forces, a hidden danger to our military preparedness that is just as important as the next generation of aircraft.

We can do these things and still hold the line on defense spending, but it requires us to make hard choices: choices between oversized base structures and modern, ready forces; between wasteful, outdated personnel practices and contemporary ones; between yesterday’s Cold War weapons systems and tomorrow superior technologies.

Source: The Journey From Here, by Bill Bradley, p.154-56 Aug 15, 2000

Strengthen Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

The first line of defense is to come to a better understanding with Russia, which is teeming with too many weapons and too many underpaid scientists. The second is to strengthen international treaties, including the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty. The third is to revitalize national intelligence efforts and turn them more exclusively toward these weapons [of mass destruction] and those who build them. That means seeking new ways to cope with one inevitable by-product of more open borders: technology transfers that enable those who threaten the peace to create more modern and dangerous weapons. Progress on this front is possible only through cooperative efforts on the part of all the major trading nations, including Russia and China.
Source: The Journey From Here, by Bill Bradley, p.157 Aug 15, 2000

Make military pay attractive again

Q: How would you support military personnel?
A: First, A) pay respect; B) raise benefits & pay. We can do that with the steady-state defense budget if we make tough decisions on base closings, tough decisions on unnecessary weapon systems and negotiate with the Russians in order to get a much lower level of nuclear weapons. And then take that savings and make investments in pay and benefits. If there’s anything that’s important in the military of the future, it’s the talent of our military personnel.
Source: Democrat debate in Los Angeles Mar 1, 2000

It’s time for a post-Cold War (smaller) defense budget

Q: You are the only presidential candidate who has said he is not for increased military spending. How would you avoid vulnerability? A: Because we’re heading to a new age. We no longer have to fight the cold war. We have a defense budget that resembles the cold war defense budget. We don’t have to protect Europe against the possibility that Soviet tanks would move across the north German plain. We have new threats on the horizon. So we can eliminate certain weapon systems that are from the cold war, we can also consolidate bases much more than we have and we can make tough choices on investment in new technology as opposed to platforms. And we can look ahead to a time where things like the arsenal ship will be moving toward replacing the aircraft carrier and doing so with only 50 people on board.
Source: Democrat Debate in Manchester NH Jan 26, 2000

The UN, not the US, is the world’s policeman

Q: When should US troops be used in international military operations?
A: I don’t think that we can be the policeman to the world. I don’t think we have the wisdom or the resources to do that. That means we’re going to have to move more and more to multilateral forums such as the UN. The key thing is to never relinquish control of our troops, but integrate more fully into a UN operation to deal with these ethnic disputes that are popping up all over the world today.
Source: Democrat Debate in Johnston Iowa Jan 8, 2000

Bring Test Ban Treaty back to Senate, and pass it

Q: Your reaction to the Senate’s rejecting the Test Ban Treaty? A: It was a serious loss. There’s no more important issue than the control of nuclear weapons in this world. The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty would have prevented other countries from getting nuclear weapons. It also gave us the means - through sensors and on-site inspections - to monitor anyone breaking the agreement. It is a major job of the next president to bring this treaty back to the Senate in a way that allows a vote in favor.
Source: Democrat Debate at Dartmouth College Oct 28, 1999

Let gays serve openly in military

“Gays should be allowed to serve openly in the military,” Bradley said. He said he did not consult with senior military officials about why they view the armed services differently from other areas of government where gays serve openly, and did not see a need to. “There have been gays in the military as long as there has been a military. They’ve only had to hide,” he said. Bradley described the administration’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on gays in the military as a near failure.
Source: Boston Globe, p. A5 Sep 20, 1999

Eliminate weapons systems unnecessary in post-Cold War

We must reexamine our military policies and objectives in light of the fact that we live in a post-Cold War era. That will help us define our defense needs. We must also be careful about funding weapons systems that powerful congressional sources want, but the military doesn’t. I don’t think we need to increase the defense budget as much as the President has proposed, particularly if we are able to eliminate those unnecessary weapons systems.
Source: www.billbradley.com/ “On the Military” 5/19/99 May 19, 1999

Voted against nuke tests; Somalia; continuing draft

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Jun 26, 1996

Voted against SDI, Trident II, Seawolf, F-18s, & B-2s.

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Jun 4, 1996

Voted for landmine ban; CIA disclosure; loose nukes

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Aug 4, 1995

Voted NO on considering deploying NMD, and amending ABM Treaty.

Vote to consider establishing a policy requiring the deployment of a national missile defense system by the end of 2003. The bill would also urge discussions with Russia to amend the ABM Treaty to allow deployment of the system.
Bill S 1635 ; vote number 1996-157 on Jun 4, 1996

Voted NO on 1996 Defense Appropriations.

Approval of the 1996 Defense Appropriations bill.
Status: Bill Passed Y)62; N)35; NV)3
Reference: Defense Approps Bill FY 96; Bill S. 1087 ; vote number 1995-397 on Sep 5, 1995

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