U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham says South Carolina's military bases will face massive reductions if across-the-board budget cuts take effect in January.
The Republican lawmaker is touring the state, warning about the $1.2 trillion in cuts called for because Congress couldn't reach a deficit-cutting deal last summer. Graham makes several stops Wednesday.
In particular, Graham says two bases in South Carolina would face cancellation of the F-35 fighter jet. The jet is supposed to go to Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort and Shaw Air Force Base near Sumter.
Graham is a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. He says there are ways for Congress to find ways to cut the defense budget responsibly, but the across-the-board cuts would leave the nation with the smallest military force in decades.
"If politicians can't come up with a way to reduce spending in a responsible manner, then fire us. Don't fire the soldiers. The day that you gut our military is the day evil forces roaming this globe are going to get on steroids."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.