Why I voted Yes on H.R. 1540
I voted Yes on the Conference Report for H.R. 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012.
The annual National Defense Authorization Act is a key mechanism by which Congress fulfills its constitutional responsibility to provide for the common defense. The House version of the bill was originally approved by a vote of 322-96. The Senate passed its own version by a vote of 93-7. This "conference report" represents a negotiated compromise between the chambers.
The legislation would authorize a total of $554 billion in base funding and $115.5 billion in funding for overseas operations, ensuring our fighting men and women are properly trained and equipped to complete the missions we ask them to do. This bill also gives our troops a 1.6 percent pay raise.
Acknowledging that some defense spending has to be cut to comply with the Budget Control Act, the bill provides $19 billion less overall than the amount authorized last year.
I voted Yes because this legislation gives our troops the equipment, training, and time they need to complete their missions and return home safely. It provides their families with the resources and support they deserve. Finally, the legislation invests in capabilities needed to protect our nation from future threats.
The bill was approved by a vote of 283 – 136.