Audit the Pentagon Coalition: interview with Rafael DeGennaro

Michael and Rafael DeGennaro, Director of the Audit the Pentagon Coalition, talk about the need to audit the Department of Defense.

DeGennaro has lead the Green Scissors Coalition to cut wasteful spending and subsidies, co-founded and served as President of Taxpayers for Common Sense, and was a leader in the Read the Bill movement.

Recently, DeGennaro has turned his attention to the Department of Defense.  Although Congress has the budget power, and has passed a law requiring audits for all federal agencies, the legislature seems to have ignored the Chief Financial Officers Act of 1990 for the past 24 years with respect to the Pentagon.  The Department of Defense is the only major federal agency that hasn’t complied with the law.

The Pentagon has had a five-year plan for the past 15 years to perform an audit.  To date, it has never followed through.

DeGennaro’s coalition advocates two principles:

1)  Immediate financial consequences for any agency unable to pass an audit or is un-auditable.

2)  We should hold each part of the Pentagon accountable on its own merits.  For example, if the USMC passes an audit, but the USAF does not, then the budget for the Marines should remain untouched while the Air Force should suffer a penalty.

The Audit the Pentagon Coalition includes groups like the Independent InstituteAmericans for Tax Reform  the R Street InstituteTaxpayer Protection Alliance  Ralph NaderCode Pink.

While the Coalition is fighting for enforcement of and compliance with an existing law, its director, DeGennaro, applauds the efforts of Representatives Barbara Lee (D), Michael C. Burgess (R), Jan Schakowsky (D), and Dan Benishek (R), who introduced HR 5126.  The Bill, the Audit the Pentagon Act of 2014, would impose a 0.5% budget penalty on any un-auditable agency while protecting certain employee pay and benefits and granting flexibility to agency heads to determine where to trim budgets.

Visit http://auditthepentagon.org/ to learn more and be sure to check out the group on twitter @auditpentagon.