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date: 27 January 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explains basic concepts used by the executive branch and Congress in requesting and allocating federal budget resources for national security. It provides a context for mandatory and discretionary budgeting and also defines some basic budget terms, such as “budget authority” and “outlays.” The chapter briefly explains the budgeting process, first within the executive branch (e.g., the White House and Departments of Defense and State) and then within the Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate. In addition, the chapter highlights some of the trade-offs that the executive branch and Congress must make in allocating federal budget resources to national security.

Keywords: national security, budget resources, budget caps, overseas contingency operations, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), appropriations committees

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