Regular readers are aware by now that the super-committee's collapse led Budget Control Act caps to reset and International Affairs (fn 150) to move out of a “security” category and into a “non-defense” category. Although this means International Affairs will no longer be competing for dollars with the Defense Department, it may now be more vulnerable: the State Department and foreign aid don’t have a large base of domestic support, and decoupling it from defense removes the protective “national security” connection.
Our own Gordon Adams drove the point home to Politico's Kate Brannen* last Friday:
From my experience, it is better to be stuck in the cage with the 800-pound gorilla than wandering in the desert of non-defense discretionary spending.
Neither of these are easy plights, of course, making this another of the reasons for the International Affairs budget's likely decline.