EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AP) On the day he submitted his new budget to Congress, President Bush called on lawmakers to rally behind his $48 billion increase for the Pentagon just as they”ve supported him in the war on terrorists.

“We”re unified in Washington on winning this war,” Bush told military personnel. “One way to express our unity is for Congress to set the military budget and the defense of the United States as the No. 1 priority and fully fund my request.”

For his tough-talking speech to promote his defense budget, Bush wore a leather bomber jacket with an American flag patch stitched over his heart. Air Force personnel in camouflage fatigues welcomed him into a hangar with a deafening cheer.

Back in Washington, lawmakers began reviewing the four-volume, $2.12 trillion spending plan that Bush formally submitted yesterday. In it, he asked Congress for a $48 billion increase in Pentagon spending. The money would build new high-tech weapons and equipment as well as improve military salaries and health benefits.

The successful campaign in Afghanistan proved the value of precision weapons, not only in defeating the enemy but in sparing innocent lives, Bush said. “And the budget I submit makes it clear we need more of them.”

“We need to be agile, quick to move. We need to be able to send our troops on the battlefields in places that many of us never thought there would be a battlefield. We need to replace aging aircraft and get ready to be able to defend freedom with the best equipment possible,” he added.

Bush said the Sept. 11 terrorists were getting more than they perhaps bargained for when they struck the World Trade Center and Pentagon.

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