The Department of Defense is the largest single discretionary line item in the federal government’s budget, yet until now it had never been audited. When I came to the United States Senate in 2015, I heard dozens of excuses for this failure, the most common being that DOD is too “large” and “complex” to complete a full audit. The simple truth is that bureaucrats had been dragging their feet for years.
I commend Defense Secretary Mattis for completing the audit.
This audit is a step in the right direction, but it honestly underscores the need for greater accountability and transparency at the DOD.
To modernize capabilities, improve readiness, and rebuild the military after years of disinvestment, we need a clear understanding of how the Pentagon is using its resources. With the national debt over $21 trillion and a global security crisis around the world, we can’t afford to misuse even a single dollar in supporting the military.