US Intel Spending Breaks $80B

Spending revealed for first time this century
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 29, 2010 8:36 AM CDT
US Intel Spending Breaks $80B
Vice President Joe Biden, left, during the swearing-in ceremony of Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, right, Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2010.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

American intelligence spending hit $80.1 billion, or some 12% of defense spending, for the just-ended fiscal year—more than what was spent on either the Department of Homeland Security ($53 billion) or the Justice Department ($30 billion). It's triple the $26.7 billion that was budgeted in 1998, the last time the figure was released. That $80.1 billion covers everything from private contractors, spies, and janitors to computer systems and satellites, the Los Angeles Times reports

Intelligence spending was classified for years and was only partially revealed starting in 2007. But the James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, this year pushed for fuller disclosure. “The American people [are] entitled to know the totality of the investment we make each year in intelligence,” he noted. “It is clear that the overall spending on intelligence has blossomed to an unacceptable level in the past decade,” said Dianne Feinstein, who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee.
(More Director of National Intelligence stories.)

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