Analysis / Budget

How Would Sequestration Impact DoD in FY 2020?

In FY 2020, the Budget Control Act (BCA) of 2011 spending limits return to their original level for both defense and non-defense at $576 billion and $543 billion, respectively. In its FY 2020 budget released in March, the Trump administration requested a total of $750 billion for national defense (050), designating the $174 billion above the cap as Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) or emergency funding and thus exempt from the spending limits. While the administration’s budget request does not breach the BCA caps, Congress is not likely to consider it a viable option and will seek to negotiate a budget agreement which increases both the defense and non-defense spending caps. If both political parties and the White House fail to reach a deal by 15 days after the current Congressional session adjourns and appropriations for FY 2020 exceed the caps, sequestration—the automatic process of imposing across-the-board budget cuts—would be triggered for the first time since 2013. This brief estimates the fiscal impact of sequestration on funding for the Department of Defense (DoD) in FY 2020.

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CSIS Briefs are produced by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), a private, tax-exempt institution focusing on international public policy issues. Its research is nonpartisan and nonproprietary. CSIS does not take specific policy positions. Accordingly, all views, positions, and conclusions expressed in this publication should be understood to be solely those of the author(s). © 2019 by the Center for Strategic and International Studies. All rights reserved.

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