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Emphasize diplomacy

In his address to Congress, President Trump said, “We want harmony and stability, not war and conflict.” But his policy proposals to add $54 billion in new Pentagon spending and make devastating cuts to State Department and USAID work against those goals.

The Pentagon wastes more money in a single year than the entire budget of other agencies. It is the only Cabinet agency that is unable to audit its financials. The Pentagon suppressed an internal report that found $125 billion in waste over five years, according to the Washington Post. As more than 120 retired three and four star generals wrote to Congress: “We know from our service in uniform that many of the crises our nation faces do not have a military solution alone.”

U.S. war spending is already unprecedented, equaling what the next seven countries combined spend on their military forces. Further increases in spending are wasteful and unnecessary. I would hope that Rep. McMorris Rodgers takes this opportunity to work with other members of Congress to curtail the president’s desire to increase the Pentagon budget and instead work toward diplomacy with both our allies and our advisories.

Anne Wright

Liberty Lake


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Editorial: Washington state lawmakers scramble to keep public in the dark

State lawmakers want to create a legislative loophole in Washington’s Public Records Act. While it’s nice to see Democrats and Republicans working together for once, it’s just too bad that their agreement is that the public is the enemy. As The Spokesman-Review’s Olympia reporter Jim Camden explained Feb. 22, lawmakers could vote on a bill today responding to a court order that the people of Washington are entitled to review legislative records.