Leaders of the congressional defense committees can agree on this much regarding the threat of steep budget cuts looming next year: it’s time to reach for a deal. Last August, Congress passed a law calling for $1.2 trillion in federal deficit reduction. In the absence of an agreement on how to reduce the deficit, the law institutes a $1.2 trillion across-the-board federal budget cut in January 2013. Both parties agree that the penalty, known as sequestration, would be devastating to ...

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