Defense hawks insist on sparing military from cuts

By DONNA CASSATA | November 22, 2011 | 3:15 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress' defense hawks are vowing to spare the military from automatic cuts triggered by the failure of the supercommittee to reach a deficit reduction deal.

No way, says President Barack Obama, who threatened Monday to veto any effort to undo roughly $1 trillion in across-the-board cuts, half from domestic programs and half from defense. The president insisted that Congress come up with a plan that reduces the deficit in a targeted fashion.

The automatic cuts don't actually go into effect until January 2013. Within minutes of the supercommittee's failure, Republicans in the House and Senate said they would look at ways to stave off cuts to defense, already on track for reductions of $450 billion over 10 years.

Congress, however, isn't unified on preventing defense cuts.