BERKELEY, MO (KMOX) – If Congress fails to reach a budget deal by March 1st, how could the automatic cuts affect Boeing?
Senator Claire McCaskill says if the cuts kick in, the drop in defense spending across the board could actually help Boeing sell the Pentagon FA-18 fighter jets.
“Ironically, the sequestration might work to the benefit of the FA-18 because it is much less expensive than the Joint Strike Fighter and has 85 percent of the capability,” she said.
“I mean, I know it’s hard for anybody to believe this, my fight for the FA-18. Yes, it’s St. Louis and yes, it’s jobs but if you’re a fiscal conservative, you see the value of FA-18 because it is such a better value for taxpayers than the Joint Strike Fighter,” McCaskill added.
The Joint Strike fighter is made by Boeing’s rival, Lockheed Martin. Hazelwood-based Boeing Defense employs just under 15,000 employees and last fall announced plans to cut ten percent of its management positions here by the end of 2012.
McCaskill say she’s pessimistic about Republicans and Democrats working a budget compromise before the deadline to avoid the automatic cuts.