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Spending on the Military: Wicker, Palazzo on Defense Authorization Act

WASHINGTON, D.C.–Providing adequate money for U.S. military operations is what Republicans in Congress hope happens with the Defense Authorization Act, that passed a U.S. House committee earlier this week and now heads to the floor for a vote.

Democrats say they will oppose any spending bill that has a cap, with a possible veto coming from the president.

The legislation funds critical national security needs, military operations abroad, and health and quality-of-life programs for the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families.

“I’m confident that we’re gonna have the same sort of bipartisan, there’s no reason for us not to have the same sort of bipartisan support on the floor of the Senate this week for the Defense Authorization Act that we had out of committee,” said Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

WICKER STATEMENT

He said earlier this week the vote was right along party lines, but Republicans and Democrats were able to work together to get the Senate version out of committee.

“I think we’ll be doing what the American people expect us to do on the foreign policy and national defense issues, putting partisanship aside and moving forward as Americans in a bipartisan fashion,” he said at a press conference in DC.

“Our men and women in uniform fight to protect our nation, and it’s our job to ensure they have the tools and resources they need to do their job,” said Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.), speaking of the upcoming House vote.

“In South Mississippi we are a military community, so we know the value and importance of protecting our military assets.  The world isn’t getting any safer and unfortunately this president’s leadership, or lack thereof, has put our country in a position where our friends don’t trust us and our enemies don’t fear us.  Approving this bill today to fund our military was the right thing to do, and it sends a clear message that the common defense of our nation remains our number one priority in Congress.  We stand united and prepared to do our part in supporting a strong national defense today, tomorrow, and in the future.”

The FY16 Defense Appropriations bill provides $578.6 billion to fund our military operations, readiness, and health and safety programs, an increase of $24.4 billion.  Of those funds $88.4 billion are directed towards  the Global War on Terrorism in order to provide resources and meet operational needs, said a release from Palazzo’s office.

The bill continues to recognize the National Guard border patrol missions as a priority and includes a 2.3 percent pay increase for our troops.  It also includes provisions directly affecting our military assets in South Mississippi including the continued funding of an amphibious assault ship to be built in Pascagoula and continues the freeze on the movement of Guard Apache helicopters out of Mississippi.

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