NDAA Passes House, Appropriations Blocked in Senate

The latest version of the National Defense Authorization Act, which complies with the recent budget deal, was passed Thursday by the House of Representatives before the Senate blocked the 2016 defense appropriations bill from being considered. The NDAA passed the House by a vote of 370-58. Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said the NDAA “provides the resources our troops need for a strong national defense, and it does so in a fiscally responsible way while also reforming the way the military does business and cares for the troops.” Thornberry urged the President—who vetoed the previous version of the bill—to sign the legislation “and never again use our troops as political bargaining chips.” The Senate will soon have a chance to vote on the new NDAA, but blocked consideration of the DOD appropriations bill for Fiscal 2016 on Thursday. Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) was “wasting the Senate’s time” on votes “that he knows will fail.” Democrats object to what Reid called a “piecemeal approach,” rather than an omnibus funding bill that would fund the Defense Department and other federal agencies. “There is no reason we can’t get an omnibus bill to fund all of the government by the Dec. 11 deadline,” Reid said.