The Trump administration set up another showdown with Congress by confirming Monday that it will move some domestic defense spending to the overseas contingency operations (OCO) fund, which is exempt from spending caps.
“Fiscal conservatives may feel uncomfortable using OCO in this way,” Russ Vought, the acting director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) wrote in a Real Clear Politics op-ed. “Yet, as long as Congressional Democrats insist on demanding more social spending in exchange for continuing to fund defense spending, expanding the use of OCO funds remains the administration’s only fiscally responsible option in meeting national security needs while avoiding yet another increase to the spending caps.”
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) and House Budget Committee Chairman John Yarmuth (D-Ky.) called the plan a “gimmick,” according to Military Times.
OMB is scheduled to deliver its budget request to Capitol Hill mid-March.