Final Action on House Version of FY 2017 Defense Authorization Bill

Yesterday, the House approved the bill by a vote of 277-147. There were a number of objections to the Rules Committee process by which the Republican leadership avoided tough votes. Ranking Democrat Adam Smith (D-WA) in particular voiced his objections to the amendment process and opposed the bill.

 

Nuclear Weapons

Amendment adopted by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 10 (2nd rule) Alert status and numbers of ICBM: Lummis (R-WY), Zinke (R-MT), Cramer, Kevin (R-ND), Rogers, Mike (R-AL) amendment No. 301 to bar changes to the alert status of ICBM’s or unilateral reductions. Council for a Livable World Opposes this amendment.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 26 (2nd rule) B-21 Cost Estimate: Blumenauer (D-OR), Quigley (D-IL), Polis (D-CO) amendment No. 281 to require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report on the total cost of research, production and maintenance of the B-21 aircraft. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 83 (2nd rule) INF Treaty Sanctions: Poe (R-TX), Rogers (R-AL) amendment No. 106 (revised) to prohibit government contracts with entities and people that have contributed to Russia’s violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 89 (2nd rule) Open Skies Treaty & Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty: Cooper (D-TN), Rogers (R-AL), amendment No. 258 to require a report on Open Skies Treaty and Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty.

 

Non-Proliferation:

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 113 – France-US Low Enriched Uranium Naval Dialogue: Foster (D-IL) amendment No. 293 requires the Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Energy to provide a briefing to the appropriate committees on the feasibility and potential benefits of a dialogue between the United States and France on the use of low-enriched uranium in naval reactors. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

 

Defense spending

Amendment rejected 63-360 Rules Committee amendment 6 (2nd rule) 1% military budget cut: Polis (D-CO)-Lee (D-CA) amendment No. 189 requiring a 1% cut in the base military budget, excluding military/reserve/National Guard personnel and the Defense Health Program account.

Amendment rejected 132-289 Rules Committee amendment 9 (2nd rule) Overseas contingency operations (OCO) funding: Ellison (D-MN), Lee (D-CA), Schrader D-OR), Jones (R-NC) amendment No. 200 (revised) to reduce  base procurement funding in the OCO account to $1.3 billion and adding most of that funding to pay for overseas operations, with $26 million designated to suicide prevention. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 21 (2nd rule) OCO: Mulvaney (R-SC), Van Hollen (D-MD), Lee (D-CA), Sanford (R-SC) amendment No. 213 to codify what funding can be placed in the OCO account. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 52 (2nd rule) National Guard Flyovers: Sanford (R-SC) amendment No. 172 to provide a public account of the total cost of National Guard flyovers at public events.

 

Overseas wars

Amendment rejected 138-265 Rules Committee amendment 5 (2nd rule) AUMF: Lee (D-CA) amendment No. 81 to repeal the 2001 AUMF 90 days after enactment of the bill.

Amendment rejected 131-292 Rules Committee amendment 7 (2nd rule) Afghanistan: Ellison (D-MN) amendment No. 199 to strike language in the bill calling on the President to continue the U.S. mission in Afghanistan after 2016.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 65 (2nd rule) Cost Estimate: Lewis (D-GA) amendment No. 12 to require a public estimate of cost of each of the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

 

Iran

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 84 (2nd rule) Iran-Russia: Pompeo (R-KS), Lipinski (D-IL) amendment No. 123 to require the Secretary of Defense to submit a report to Congress on cooperation between Iran and the Russian Federation and to what extent such cooperation affects United States national security and strategic interests.

 Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 95 (2nd rule) Iran- Ballistic Missile Launches: Moulton (D-MA), Wilson (R-SC), Duncan (R-SC), O’Rourke (D-TX) amendment No. 306 to require the President to officially notify Congress whenever Iran conducts a ballistic missile launch (including ballistic missile tests) and inform the Congress as to actions the President will take in response, including diplomatic efforts to pursue additional sanctions, including through passage of a United Nations Security Council resolution.

 

Misc. amendments

Amendment rejected 163-259 Rules Committee amendment 12 – Guantanamo Bay prison: Nadler amendment No. 62 removing prohibitions on closing the Guantanamo Bay prison.

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Review of May 17 Proceedings

Amendment approved through adoption of the rule on the bill Drafting women into the military: Sessions (R-TX) amendment No. 2 to strike the section requiring women to register for the draft. Self-Executing amendment: the amendment will be considered adopted once the House adopts the first rule on the bill on May 17. This procedure is being used to avoid having Members vote on whether to require women to register for the draft.

Amendment adopted by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 2 – Reduction to Non-Proliferation Account: Westerman (R-AR) amendment No. 204,  to cut $82.4 million from the “Material Management & Minimization” and “Non-Proliferation R&D” accounts within the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Defense Nuclear Non-Proliferation program, with the funds added to the Surface-To-Air missile MSE program.  Council for a Livable World Opposes this amendment.

Amendment rejected by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 25 – Non-proliferation funding: Larsen (D-WA) amendment No. 170 to permit the Secretary of Energy to issue a waiver to permit U.S.-Russian cooperation to reduce the nuclear threat. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

Amendment rejected by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 3 – New ICBM’s: Garamendi (D-CA) amendment No. 152 to cut $18 million from the new Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) program and increase the Air Force’s procurement of Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures by the same amount. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

Amendment adopted by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 26 – Nuclear report mandate: Rogers (R-AL) amendment No. 193 (revised) to fence off 50% of the funds for the Office of the Secretary of the Energy until the finished report “U.S. Nuclear Deterrence in the Coming Decades” is sent to Intelligence committees in both chambers.

Amendment adopted by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 11 – National Security Council (NSC) staff: Thornberry (R-TX) amendment No. 89 to limit the staff size of the NSC to 100 from its present size of about 400. If the NSC exceeds 100 staffers, the National Security Adviser must be confirmed by the Senate.

 Amendment adopted by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 13 – Subjecting National Security Council (NSC) to Freedom of Information Act: Walorski (R-IN) revised amendment No. 1 subjecting the NSC to the Freedom of Information Act after Senate confirmation of the National Security Advisor.

Amendment adopted en bloc by voice vote Rules Committee amendment 46 – Auditing the Pentagon: Burgess (R-TX), Schakowsky (D-IL), DeFazio (D-OR), Welch (D-VT) amendment No. 16 to require a report ranking all military departments and Defense Agencies on their ability to be audited as required by law. Council for a Livable World Supports this amendment.

 

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House Rules Committee refused to permit votes on

Nuclear weapons cost: Sanchez, Loretta (D-CA), Garamendi (D-CA), Blumenauer (D-OR) amendment No. 232 to require a Pentagon report on the 25-year cost of the nuclear weapons modernization program.

W80-4 Nuclear Weapons Life Extension Program: Quigley (D-IL), Garamendi (D-CA), Blumenauer (D-OR), Polis (D-CO) amendment No. 153 to cut $21 million in funding for the W80-4 life extension program and increase funding for traumatic brain injury treatment by the same amount.

 W80-4 Nuclear Weapon Life Extension Program: Garamendi (D-CA) amendment No. 374 to increases the authorization for Air Force procurement of Battlefield Airmen Operations Kits by $21,000,000 to address an unfunded requirement identified by the Air Force and reduces the authorization for the W80-4 Life Extension Program by the same amount.

DOD Report on Counter-WMD Strategy: Quigley (D-IL) amendment No. 154 to require the Secretary of Defense to submit an updated report on the Department’s strategy for countering weapons of mass destruction.

Highly Enriched Uranium Use in Foreign Naval Reactors: Foster (D-IL) amendment No. 292 Directs the Director of National Intelligence, in consultation with the Secretaries of Defense, Energy, and State, to submit to congress a report on the status of current countries producing highly-enriched uranium for use in naval reactors.

Literal combat ships (LCS):  Gosar (R-AZ), Speier (D-CA) amendment No. 22 to cut funding for a third LCS ship.

Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF): McGovern (D-MA), Jones (R-NC), Garamendi (D-CA), Yoho (R-FL), Lee, Barbara (D-CA), Cicilline (D-RI) amendment No. 147 to bar deployment of U.S. forces in Iraq or Syria unless Congress passes a new AUMF by April 30, 2017.

AUMF: Schiff (D-CA) amendment No. 274 to repeal the 2001 and 2002 AUMF’s and instead provides a three-year authorization for use of military force against al Qaeda, ISIL and the Taliban.

AUMF: Rigell (R-VA), Welch (D-VT) amendment No. 151 to authorize the use of military force against ISIL.

Whistleblowers: Speier (D-CA), Coffman (R-CO), Rice, Kathleen (D-NY), Blum (R-IA) amendment No. 188 to Improve military whistleblower procedures.

Final Action on House Version of FY 2017 Defense Authorization Bill