(Full committee amendments italicized)
The House Armed Services Committee approved the bill early in the morning of June 6 after a marathon session that began the morning of June 5. The vote was 59-2. The two votes against the bill were Garamendi (D-CA) and Speier (D-CA). The full House is expected to consider the bill the week of June 10.
The Senate Armed Services Committee is scheduled to markup or write its version of the bill the week of June 10 as well. There is no timetable for full Senate consideration of the bill.
Total for base (non-war related) funding: $552.1 billion
Total primarily for Afghanistan war funding, or Overseas Contingency Operations: $85.8 billion, a minimal decline from $89.2 billion authorized last year despite an anticipated 39% reduction of U.S. force levels in Afghanistan.
Total in bill: $637.9 billion
Budget sequester: The base budget is $52 billion above the budget sequester number required by previous law. Cooper (D-TN) amendment permitting the Pentagon to shift $20 billion between accounts to help alleviate problems caused by sequester rejected 16-45.
Nuclear weapons issues
Additional missile defense interceptors on the West Coast: Approves Pentagon request for 14 new interceptor missiles to be place in Alaska. Sanchez (D-CA) amendment 054r1 to eliminate an additional $107 million in the Chairman’s mark above the budget request for the Ground Based Midcourse Defense system (specifically long-lead procurement for 14 new Ground Based Interceptors rocket boosters) and add it to National Guard and Reserve equipment failed by voice vote.
East Coast missile defense: Turner (R-OH) amendment #003 requiring the Missile Defense Agency to make a missile defense site on the East Coast operational by 2018, approved 33-27. One Democrat voted aye: Rep. Maffei (D-NY).
Garamendi (D-CA) amendment #218r1 to eliminate an additional $140 million in the Chairman’s mark above the budget request for the Ground Based Midcourse Defense system (specifically to begin construction of a national missile defense site on the East Coast) and add it National Guard and Reserve equipment failed 26-36. Two Democrats voted nay: McInytre (D-NC) and Hanabusa (D-HI).
Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS): Shuster (R-PA) amendment prohibiting the use of funds for the Medium Extended Air Defense System approved by voice vote.
Directed energy weapons: Garamendi (D-CA) amendment to increase funding for directed energy weapons research was rejected by voice vote.
Missile defense cooperation with Russia: Brooks (R-AL) amendment to prevent the sharing of sensitive US missile defense information with Russia unless approved by the Senate as part of a treaty or by the full Congress, approved by voice vote.
Nuclear weapons funding: Funds the National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) request for nuclear weapons activities at $8.088 billion, an increase of approximately $220 million from the requested level. This includes $581 million for the B61 life extension program, an increase of $44 million above the budget request. Sanchez (D-CA) amendment #057 to eliminate an additional $220 million in the Chairman’s mark above the budget request for NNSA weapons activities account failed 27-35. One Democrat voted no: McIntyre (D-NC).
Combined Langevin (D-RI) amendment #209 r2 and Garamendi (D-CA) amendment #219 to address NNSA cost overruns by having the DoD Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation (CAPE) perform cost estimates and analysis of alternatives for NNSA projects approved by voice vote.
B61 nuclear weapon: Lamborn (R-CO) amendment #106 to reduce funding for 20% of the budget for the Global Threat Reduction Initiative if the National Nuclear Security Agency cannot certify that the B61 life extension program will be completed by 2019 approved 32-29. One Republican voted no: Gibson (R-NY).
Nuclear weapons launchers: Authorizes $1.08 billion for the next generation of nuclear ballistic missile submarines, the same as the request. The bill also includes $379 million for a new long-range, nuclear-capable bomber, $5 million for a new air launched nuclear cruise missile, and $9.4 million to study a replacement for the ICBM-leg of the triad, all the same as the request.
Nuclear non-proliferation funding: Fully funds the National Nuclear Security Administration’s request of $2.14 billion for the Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation account, including $424.5 million for the Global Threat Reduction Initiative (GTRI). However, the Obama request for GTRI was $76.5 million less than the pre-sequester, FY13 appropriation. It also fully funds the Pentagon’s request of $528.5 million for the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program. Sanchez (D-CA) amendment adding $23 million above the budget request for GTRI and offsetting the increase by reducing funding for the International Material Protection and Cooperation program approved as part of en bloc package.
Nuclear weapons reductions: Rogers (R-AL) amendment #207 to block $75 million in the budget request (and eliminated in the Chairman’s mark) to implement New START until the administration provides Congress with a plan for what reductions will be undertaken to meet the treaty limits approved by voice vote.
Rogers (R-AL) amendment #206 to prohibit further nuclear reductions below the New START levels unless the reductions are approved by the treaty process approved by voice vote.
Nuclear triad: Lamborn (R-CO) amendment to preserve the nuclear triad approved by voice vote as part of an en bloc amendment. Garamendi (D-CA) amendment #224 requiring a study by the Comptroller General on the utility of continuing to maintain a nuclear triad failed by voice vote.
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBO): Lamborn (R-CO) amendment #132 to fence funding for the US contribution to the CTBO until it is certified that Russia and China are not conducting nuclear test explosions in violation of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty approved by voice vote.
Dual capable aircraft: Turner (R-OH) amendment #4 prohibiting the reduction or consolidation of aircraft in Europe capable of carrying both nuclear and conventional weapons unless it is certified that Russia has taken similar steps and the reduction/consolidation is agreed to by our NATO allies approved 32-30. Two Republicans voted no: Coffman (R-CO) and Gibson (R-NY).
Chinese tunnels hiding nuclear weapons: Rogers (R-AL) amendment giving the Pentagon another year to complete a study on China’s nuclear arsenal, including those that might be hidden in tunnels, fencing 25% of the Pentagon’s travel budget until the study is underway approved by voice vote.
Extended nuclear deterrence: Sanchez (D-CA) amendment #055 requiring an independent report on the availability of more cost-effective alternatives to extended deterrence compared to forward deployed tactical nuclear weapons defeated by voice vote.
Aircraft carrier: Raises the cost cap on a new aircraft carrier from $11.75 billion to $12.9 billion
F-35 aircraft: Authorizes $5.1 billion for 29 planes; requires an independent assessment of JSF software programs along with a life cycle sustainment plan. Duckworth (D-IL) amendment to fly before buying a new segment of planes defeated 10-51.
Littoral Combat Ship: Requires a lifetime sustainment plan and improved oversight. Palazzo (R-Miss) amendment expressing “significant concerns” about the program passed by voice vote.
Ground Combat Vehicle: Limits funding for the next stage of the Army’s development until the Secretary of the Army submits a status report to Congress
M1 Abrams Tank: Requires the Secretary of the Army to report on a strategy to improve fuel efficiency. Provides $168 million in additional funding for Abrams tank upgrades for a total of $346.1 million.
F/A-18E/F Super Hornet: Funds the administration’s request of $206.6 million and provides an additional $75 million for advance procurement.
Afghanistan, Guantanamo Bay, Sexual Assault and other issues
Guantanamo Bay prison: Bars spending on any prison facilities in the U.S. to which prisoners from Guantanamo Bay could be transferred and restricts the ability to move prisoners to other countries. Smith (D-WA) amendment to strike the Guantanamo Bay section defeated 23-38.
Andrews (D-NJ) amendment to withhold a $186 million authorization for the detention center until the President submits a report to Congress on the locations where he would transfer individuals if allowed approved by voice vote.
Afghanistan: Sense of Congress endorsing continued U.S. troop presence in Afghanistan after 2014 as well as continued funding for Afghan National Security Forces.
Afghanistan security forces: Provides $7.7 billion for Afghan National Security Forces, an increase of $2.6 billion or 51% from last year’s enacted level of $5.1 billion.
Syria: Only authorizes U.S. forces to train and equip regional partners for weapons of mass destruction response, not equipping anti-Assad forces or other military intervention.
Sexual assault: Strips commanders of their authority to dismiss a finding by a court martial and prohibits commanders from reducing guilty findings to guilty of a lesser offense.
Iran: Expands the annual Iran Military Power Report to include an assessment of Iran’s global network along with American intelligence and capabilities gaps. Requires a report on military partnerships with Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and the impact of shifting those programs from OCO funding to the DoD base budget. Reflects a Sense of Congress that the United States strategic interests are best served with more than one carrier in the Persian Gulf.
Military Pay: Provides a 1.8 percent military pay increase in 2014, a 0.1 percent increase over 2013.
Alternative fuels: Conaway (R-TX) amendment to block the Defense Department from purchasing or producing biofuels approved by voice vote. Lamborn (R-CO) amendment to block the Pentagon from buying electric vehicles failed on a 31-31 vote.
Pentagon proposals rejected
New round of base closing: Rejects. Smith (D-WA) amendment to remove a provision blocking future base closings failed 18-44. The committee bill both rejected the next rounds of based closing proposed by the Pentagon but also barred planning for future base closings.
Raise health care fees for soldiers (Tricare): Rejects.