Arkansas National Guard Lobbies in Washington Against Force Cuts

FEBRUARY 17, 2006 - Posted at 8:06 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Arkansas National Guard officials hope the state's congressional delegation can help stop planned cuts in the National Guard and Army Reserve.  They visited Washington yesterday to lobby Arkansans in Congress to oppose any reductions.

The Army National Guard's authorized size nationwide, the number of troops for which it receives funding, would shrink from 350,000 to 333,000, the number of people it actually has.

Army spokesman Sheldon Smith said that the measure wouldn't lead to cuts of troops.  He said the National Guard is simply being structured to meet the number of people it's got.

The proposed reductions have been unpopular among members of Congress, including Senator Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)