House lawmakers to vote on annual defense bill

Washington-DC

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) ─ House lawmakers are expected to vote and pass the annual defense bill Tuesday.

The $740-billion package includes a 3% pay raise for military officials and $1 billion in COVID-19 preparedness funds.

Rep. Anthony Brindisi, D-New York, said the National Defense Authorization Act is critical for the country’s men and women in uniform, both at home and abroad.

Rep. Richard Neal, D-Massachusetts, said the bills 3% pay raise for troops is critical.

“One of the most important considerations is obviously a pay raise for our military personnel,” Neal said.

Rep. David Cicilline, D-Rhode Island, praised the funding set aside for a new submarine.

“It’s very important to Rhode Island’s economy, it’s a very significant source of Rhode Island jobs,” he said.

Rep. Joe Morelle, D-New York, said the package will also ensure the Department of Defense buys American-made goods.

“Both the supply chain and the workforce in America, to build products that help secure not only our economic future but our national security future,” Morelle said.

But the House bill faces a rocky road as President Donald Trump has already threatened to veto the bill.

At issue is a provision to rename military bases named after confederate leaders, though some Republicans like Rep. Tom Reed, R-New York, expect there to be a compromise.

“The final bill between the Senate and the House will resolve those issues in a way that is amicable,” Reed said.

The Senate is expected to take up its version on the bill soon.

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