As reported by The Hill:
The House passed the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act Thursday, setting up a veto showdown with the Obama administration.
The 270-156 vote comes after the House and Senate Armed Services committees reached agreement on a final conference report earlier this week.
The Senate is expected to take it up next week, and if passed, it will head to the president.
President Obama has issued a veto threat against the bill, which senior administration officials warn he will follow through on. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Wednesday he has already recommended that the president veto it.
The White House and Democrats oppose the bill because it would authorize spending levels in accordance with a Republican plan to boost defense spending, but leave federal spending caps in place on nondefense spending.
The bill would authorize $612 billion for the Defense Department — the same amount the White House has requested — but it would leave budget caps, known as sequester, in place and funnel $38 billion through a war fund not subject to the caps.
The White House wants Congress to lift the caps on both defense and nondefense spending, and instead put the $38 billion into the Pentagon’s base budget.
According to a Republican House aide, since it was first passed over 50 years ago, the defense authorization has only been vetoed four times: in 1979, 1989, 1996 and 2008. Each time, a compromise was found, the aide noted.
“This is the first time that the commander in chief will sacrifice national security by vetoing a bill that provides pay and benefits for our troops, as leverage for his larger domestic political agenda,” the aide said.”
via Allen West: At a time when Russia has deployed troops and combat aircraft to Syria, along with Iran’s Quds Force. At a time when President Barack Obama is about to unfreeze and release $150B to the #1 state sponsor of Islamic terrorism. At a time when we gapped our coverage of a Carrier Battlegroup (CVBG) in the Persian Gulf. At a time when China has a military unit conducting cyber attacks and building archipelagos, with military weapons, being emplaced along a major trade route in the South China Sea. At a time when Russia still holds Crimea and has invaded the sovereign country of Ukraine. At a time when Obama has announced he will cut 40,000 active duty soldiers from our Army, putting my Army at pre-World War II levels.
With all this going on, Obama’s playing foolish games with our national security, our defense, all over getting his way with more wasteful domestic spending. Obama fails to realize what his most important title is: Commander in Chief. His title is not Welfare Provider in Chief. Amazing, this is the first time a president will jeopardize our national security, put at risk pay and benefits for our troops and their families — for a domestic spending agenda.
Not every dollar in Washington, D.C. is equal, and if there’s one priority for the federal government, it’s our defense, our security.
What are Barack Obama’s priorities? Why will he vehemently issue a veto warning on cutting $565M of taxpayer funds to Planned Parenthood — and in same breath, veto the authorization of our defense? And what kind of SecDef recommends the veto of those whom he’s entrusted to lead and care for? I want you all to understand what’s happening. We’ve entered FY 2016 and our U.S. military is not authorized. And is it any wonder Vladimir Putin is kicking our butts — ok, Obama’s butt — all over the place?
Obama’s giving Iran $150B and whining like a baby over $38B for our defense? It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Folks, right now, we don’t need to spend more money on food stamps and other welfare, nanny-state programs. We need to get our defense of the republic on track. After all, the Constitution states, “provide for the common defense” and “promote the general welfare” — the former is based upon an active verb, the latter a passive one.
However, for Barack Obama it’s more about “providing welfare” and talking about defense. This represents yet another complete abdication of President Obama’s primary responsibilities at a very critical time — you can bet Putin knows Obama’s threatened to veto our defense authorization bill. Caps, sequestration — yep, that’s all good when there’s no enemy out there — but if you haven’t noticed, the Taliban took a major northern Afghanistan city, Kunduz, this week. Seems the Taliban didn’t get the memo about combat operations having ceased — but they know Obama’s anxious to run away, just as he did in Iraq. And look how great that turned out.
Let’s be brutally honest folks — and yes, I’m talking to you, too, progressive socialists — Barack Obama has intentionally weakened our military capability and capacity. It’s unfathomable that a Commander in Chief would do that to his own military. Then again, with Barack Obama, campaign promises and ideology, no matter how dangerous, outweigh reality and even common sense. This is such a dangerous policy game being played and it’s quite hard to explain this other than it’s just done on purpose.
If President Obama vetoes the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act at this time, it’s quite telling. It tells the story of one who possesses an indescribable animus towards his own country. It reflects a mentality that this country has not EVER seen. And it evidences a type of presidency we must ensure never again occupies the White House.
What amazes me? It’s that Obama does whatever he wants, and no one — media, politicians — has yet shown the moral courage, the strength of character and the conviction to confront him and convey a simple message. You, President Barack Obama are betraying our country and not obeying the oath of office you took. This is unconscionable, despicable and unacceptable — and those are the words a true American Speaker of the House would use.