McCain: Pentagon cuts 'a serious mistake'

Sen. John McCainJohn McCainPrimary opponent: McCain has 'issues about race' Clinton, Trump sharpen attacks The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (R-Ariz.) on Tuesday said the Pentagon’s proposed cuts are “a serious mistake” that send the wrong signal internationally.

McCain, who has worked to cut wasteful Defense Department projects throughout his career, nonetheless criticized the size of the cuts proposed Monday by the Pentagon. 

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“I believe that, when we are sending the signal that we are cutting defense, I think in this very dangerous world that we live in, is a serious mistake," McCain said in an interview on CNN’s “New Day.”

"There are savings that could be made in defense, but when we’re making cuts this size, it concerns me a great deal, especially since we’re increasing domestic spending,” McCain said. 

On Monday, Defense Secretary Chuck HagelChuck HagelThere's still time for another third-party option Hagel says NATO deployment could spark a new Cold War with Russia Overnight Defense: House panel unveils 5B defense spending bill MORE unveiled a 2015 budget that would shrink the Army from 520,000 troops to between 440,000 and 450,000 troops over five years. That would reduce the Army to its smallest size since before World War II. 

The Pentagon also plans to reduce the size of the Army National Guard, the Army Reserve and the Marine Corps over the next five years.

Several Republican governors who were attending events at the White House on Monday criticized the Obama administration for cutting the National Guard. 

Military bases would also close under the proposed budget, and benefits would be cut for active duty service members and their families.