Rep. Bishop’s Response to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel’s Furlough Reduction
"Secretary Hagel is validating what many of us thought all along- that furloughing civilian defense workers, particularly Air Force workers, could have been avoided. I realize that after three rounds of draconian cuts to the Defense budget, the U.S. Department of Defense had to make cuts just about everywhere possible. However, there were early indications, particularly following congressional action, that furloughs may not actually be necessary and that cuts could be absorbed in other areas. The continued reduction of days from 22, to 11, to six illustrates that this is likely the case. After many meetings with military leaders and Pentagon officials it was clear that the Administration's decision to proceed with furloughs was based more on politics than the law or actual need and it's concerning that they played politics with the livelihoods of hard working Americans. If Secretary Hagel wants to do the right thing, he should reduce furlough days to zero. Six is certainly better than 22 but zero is the ultimate goal."