News Release

Rep. Barbara Lee’s Startling Vote to Boost Military Spending


To the surprise of many, Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) provided the winning margin in the House Budget Committee last week when she voted for a bill that would raise military spending by $17 billion next year. Some prominent constituents of the famously antiwar congresswoman are now vocally questioning her pivotal action.

GUS NEWPORT, gusnewport at
Newport is former mayor of Berkeley, Calif. and former vice president from the U.S. to the World Peace Council. He said today: “It is with great sadness that I have to speak out in opposition to Congresswoman Barbara Lee for voting in favor of raising an already inflated military budget. She will always be remembered as the lone vote in September 2001 against a green light for endless war; however in no way is her present position justified.”

MICHAEL EISENSCHER, meisenscher at, @meisenscher

National coordinator emeritus of U.S. Labor Against the War, Eisenscher said today: “Politicians are pragmatic about trading votes to move their legislative priorities. But there’s a difference between trading votes and trading away principles. The war machine and military-industrial complex consume more than half our discretionary budget, starving social programs and other national priorities in the name of ‘national security.’ Real national security is not determined by how large and lethal our military is but rather by whether our people earn living wages, have affordable housing, can see a doctor when needed without incurring huge medical bills and can go to college without becoming life-long indentured servants to their student loans. And we gain more influence in the world by being respected than by being feared.”

See recent piece — “Rep. Barbara Lee’s Startling Vote to Boost Military Spending” — by Norman Solomon, co-founder of and founder and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy.