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Lieberman calls for more spending on homeland security

Presidential hopeful Sen. Joseph Lieberman criticized President Bush for being “too stingy in improving our homeland defenses” and called for a $16 billion increase in spending on domestic defense. “Our borders and ports are too porous, our first responders are under-supported, our infrastructure is under-protected and our supply of vaccines and antidotes is far too limited,” the Connecticut Democrat said Friday in a speech at George Washington University. “We can and must do better.” Bush’s budget proposal for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1 calls for spending $41.3 billion on homeland security. Lieberman’s plan would increase that amount by more than a third, and roughly half of the senator’s proposed increase would be spent on police, firefighters and other first responders. Lieberman called for more coordinated work between the departments of Homeland Security and Defense to train first responders in chemical, radiological and biological warfare. He proposed a National Homeland Security Academy, a sort of West Point for domestic defense training, and said he would introduce legislation to expand the ROTC to add domestic defense training. Full Story

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