Congressional conservatives have demanded far more dramatic reductions in government spending than House GOP leaders have proposed, reports the Washington Post. Members of the conservative Republican Study Committee said the GOP must keep its campaign pledge to slice at least $100 billion from non-defense programs, an effort that would require lawmakers to reduce funding for most federal agencies by a third over the next seven months. This could bring deep cuts in criminal-justice staffing and programs.
According to Democratic estimates, cuts applied across the board would require the Justice Department to fire 4,000 FBI agents and 1,500 agents at the Drug Enforcement Administration. The federal prison system would have to fire 5,700 correctional officers. There was no immediate estimate on how cuts would affect federal aid for state and local anticrime programs, but the current budgeted figure is $519 million. The Obama administration's budget proposal for the fiscal year starting in October is expected in mid-February.