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What Would Defense Cuts Mean For Mass.?

Two dueling studies from the University of Massachusetts are fueling the national debate on defense cuts.

There’s a lot at stake in this debate, as federal lawmakers contend with how to slash nearly $1 trillion in defense spending over the next 10 years. That’s what federal law requires in the wake of Congress’s failure to agree on a deficit reduction package back in 2011.

It would mean huge job cuts across the nation — and especially here in Massachusetts — which ranks fifth in the nation in the number of Department of Defense contracts. That’s the conclusion of one study from the UMass Donahue Center, which gets funds from the defense contractor Raytheon.

But another study from the Political Economy Research Institute at UMass lays out a case for why investments in education, clean energy and health would create many more jobs than defense. That study was paid for by Ben Cohen, founder of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream.

Guests:

  • Bryan Bender, national security reporter for The Boston Globe
  • Robert Pollin, co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute at UMass Amherst and professor of economics

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