14 Jun Political Report: 6/13/16
NDAA Bill Decision to be Made Tuesday
The NDAA bill is headed to final action tomorrow. On Friday, the Senate voted 68-23 to end debate on the bill. This came after numerous amendments were blocked from consideration due to Senator Mike Lee’s objections pertaining to his proposal on indefinite detention. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., after the vote praised the $602 billion authorization bill’s support for national security, claiming that it will “help prepare our country for threats of today and the challenges of tomorrow, and it will better enable the next commander-in-chief –regardless of party—to deal with them as well”.
Typically, the NDAA bill passes in the Senate easily, however, there remains one reason why the NDAA could get more GOP “no” votes. Heritage Action announced on Friday it was making the annual defense policy bill a “key vote,” since it objected to the bill’s requiring women to register for the draft. This reason is what prompted Senator Ted Cruz to vote against it in the committee.
Meanwhile, the House will continue its appropriations work by moving the 2017 defense funding bill. The bill would provide the Department of Defense with $517.1 billion in discretionary funding and would use $16 billion of the Pentagon’s war-fighting funds to purchase additional military aircraft.
Congressional Defense Activity
- SASC – 6/16 Nomination – General David L. Goldfein, 9:30am, SD-G50 Dirksen
- HASC – 6/15 Department of Defense Update on the Financial Improvement and Audit Readiness (FIAR) plan, 10:00am, 2118 Rayburn
- HAC-D – 6/14 Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2017 (Subject to a Rule)
- SAC-D – 6/16 Markup of the FY2017 Interior Appropriations Bill and FY2017 Financial Services, General Government Appropriations Bill, 10:30am, 106 Dirksen
Government Activity Round-Up
The Congressional Budget Office provides estimates and analysis for the 2017 NDAA here. It claims that the bill would “authorize appropriations totaling an estimated $603.9 billion for the military functions of the DoD, for certain activities of the Department of Energy, and for other purposes.” CBO estimates that enacting the bill would increase direct spending by $10.9 billion from 2017-2026 and would have an insignificant effect on revenues.
Other DC/Defense Activity
On Monday at noon, The Stimson Center will host panel discussions regarding China’s policy toward the Korean Peninsula under the Xi Jinping administration, with presentations by Chinese experts and American and Korean commentators. Also on Monday afternoon, Deborah Lee James, Secretary of the Air Force, will team up with IISS-Americas for a discussion regarding Defense Budgeting and National Security. All day Wednesday, the Cato Institute will host a conference with international security experts, who will discuss, among other things, what form a more restrained U.S. foreign policy should take, and the prospects for restraint given American politics today.