The White House’s FY21 budget request includes a .3% increase in military spending. While smaller than in prior years, that bump indicates a shift in priorities for the Department of Defense. Seamus Daniels, program manager & research associate for defense budget analysis at CSIS, says that funding for research and development inside the Department has an uncertain future.
“This budget is interesting, particularly if you look at DoD’s projections into the future. Procurement is going down in the next 1 or 2 years and it’s increasing back up. But R&D is falling over the course of the projections, over time,” Daniels said. “So, I think there are some serious questions about whether DoD is willing to make the trade-offs over the long term. To essentially say, ‘Look, we are willing to invest in modernization over the long haul. Not just in this year’s budget.’”