Senate Passed NDAA
This week the Senate passed its version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA-H.R. 2810).The $700 billion defense policy bill passed by a vote of 89-8, and does exceed the statutory caps on defense spending enacted by the Budget Control Act (BCA). Because of this, the passage will put additional pressure on Congress to ease the 2011 BCA caps or face automatic across-the- board cuts, known as sequestration. Members are encouraged to go to the FRA action center to weigh in on this issue.
Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator John McCain (Ariz.) said, “My friends, for too long, our nation has asked our men and women in uniform to do too much with far too little. Much of the blame lies over the last administration, but we in Congress cannot escape responsibility.” Senator McCain, pointed to the recent deaths of service members during routine operations to make the case the military needs more money to climb out of a readiness crisis. The problem, he said, was a result of years of budget instability. There were 130 amendments included in the bill, however, debate on hundreds of controversial amendments were blocked when lawmakers could not agree on which amendments should get floor votes.
In July, the House passed its annual defense authorization bill. The House and Senate will now appoint a conference committee to resolve the differences between the two bills. The final bill will be submitted to both chambers and if approved will be sent to President Trump to be signed into law or be vetoed.