Weapons That Refuse to Die

Congress again proves unwilling to kill even flawed systems

"This isn't a conference report," protested Oregon's Democratic Congressman Les AuCoin. "It's a surrender document." His House colleague, California Democrat Don Edwards, agreed. "The House was skunked," he complained. Their anger was directed at the outcome of a House-Senate conference committee to resolve differences between the two chambers on next year's defense spending. The Senate had prevailed so overwhelmingly, with the unexpected concurrence of House Armed Services Committee Chairman Les Aspin, that House leaders decided to delay until after the recess a vote on the compromise military-spending package. Most galling of all, but perhaps not surprising, the Congressmen once again displayed...

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