Senate Beefs Up Supplemental Request:

The Senate Appropriations Committee proposes adding nearly $15 billion to the Administration’s request for emergency supplemental funding for the war on terror and hurricane recovery. The measure includes almost $228 million to go toward purchase of seven additional C-17 airlifters for the Air Force. Service leaders have testified that the increased use of the new airlifters in the war has played havoc with wear-out estimates, and they need seven additional to maintain the Pentagon’s benchmark 180 C-17s. (The Air Force made the additional C-17s a top unfunded requirement for 2007.) Lawmakers in both the Senate and House support buying more C-17s, however House appropriators did not include such in their version of the supplemental, which totals about $92 billion. The Senate appropriators must defend their bill before the full Senate this week, and, if it survives, face a compromise battle with the House.