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house Bill H.R. 2685

Funding the Department of Defense for Fiscal Year 2016

Argument in favor

Given the tenuous situation in the Middle East with the rise of ISIS and Iran’s nuclear program, plus aggression by Russia in the Crimea and China in vital shipping lanes — the U.S. needs it's military strong, now more than ever.

Alis's Opinion
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06/12/2015
Good grief. Our military spending is eating us alive. Let Saudi Arabia--who has a butt load U.S. military equipment--defend the Middle East against ISIS. Europe is never going to support any more action against Russia and we cannot get into a war with Putin no matter what. Make peace with Iran or let them takeover the Middle East if the Saudis don't care enough to get off their royal asses & defend themselves. And cut the damn defense budget. Americans have real domestic needs. Deal with them! *** if you can't face not running the entire world, reinstate the draft! Eternal, endless war is total insanity. You cannot expect the poor to do all the fighting & dying while your children go to Harvard & contribute nothing to the country--except spending the $$$ lobbyists pay you. This is NOT 1950. Grow up or use your useless brains & figure out a way to deal with domestic issues and quit feeding the war machine. Other generations managed. You can, too, if your pull up you britches and get to work.
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TheGeneral's Opinion
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06/10/2015
In 2010 our defense budget (GDP adjusted) was 822.74 Billion dollars. In 2015 our defense budget (GDP adjusted) is 694.48 Billion dollars. That's 128.26 Billion dollars LESS than it was 5 years ago. With the unrest in the Middle East, Iran's and North Korea's push to develop nuclear weapons, and with Russia and China building up their forces, flexing their muscles, and their incursions into disputed territories claimed by other countries, the LAST thing America should do is decrease defense spending.
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ThomasParker's Opinion
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06/19/2015
I am not a general or high ranking armed forces official. Therefore, I am not an authority on how much funding we legitimately need for defense and should not attempt to act as one. This should be determined by those officials with intimate knowledge of the situation.
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Argument opposed

Using budget gimmicks to avoid the mandatory cuts is not in the long-term interest of the military or the nation as a whole. First and foremost, Congress needs to agree to a budget that raises spending for all federal programs — not just defense.

Robert's Opinion
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06/11/2015
It's time to a fund programs that help Americans succeed!
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Basil's Opinion
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06/11/2015
Too much money already spent for no reason. Defense and "world policing" are two different things
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Valerie 's Opinion
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06/11/2015
I am completely opposed to our military intervention in the Middle East, Ukraine, South America, and everywhere else we seem to be destabilising governments. Of course, the CIA bears greatest responsibility, but they don't need any help.
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What is House Bill H.R. 2685?

This bill would authorize appropriations for the Department of Defense for fiscal year 2016. It provides $578.6 billion in discretionary funding, which is $24.4 billion more than what was allotted in fiscal year 2015, and $800 million more than the President’s request for fiscal year 2016.

This particular piece of legislation should not be confused with the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 — which authorized military spending levels, not the actual spending itself that is appropriated by this legislation.

Global War on Terrorism (GWOT)

The Global War on Terrorism account would receive $88.4 billion in funding — the amount assumed by the House and Senate budget conference agreement. These resources are used to prepare and deploy U.S. military forces overseas. It funds personnel, vehicle modifications, additional intelligence and surveillance assets, facilities maintenance, and aircraft replacement. It also funds allies (like Ukraine and Jordan) to resist aggression by their neighbors.

Military Personnel and Pay

This section would total $133.2 billion to maintain personnel levels at 1,308,915 active-duty troops and 819,200 Guard and reserve troops. This is an increase of $225 million above the previous fiscal year. Rather than a 1.3 percent pay raise for the military as requested by the President, this bill gives troops a 2.3 percent raise — and also funds 100 percent of troop housing costs.

Operation and Maintenance

$2.6 billion above the President’s budget request, this bill would fund operations and maintenance with $218.8 billion. $3.2 billion would go to fill readiness shortfalls, and $1.4 billion would be set aside for investments in facility sustainment, restoration, and modernization.

Research and Development

This bill authorizes $67.9 billion for the research, development, testing, and evaluation of new defense technologies. This is an increase of $4 billion from fiscal year 2015.

Among the projects that would receive funding under this section are: the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter; the GPS III operational control and space segments; the new Air Force bomber program; a next-generation JSTARS aircraft; the RQ-4 Triton unmanned aerial vehicle; the Navy’s Future Unmanned Carrier-based Strike System; the Ohio Class submarine replacement; Stryker lethality; and Israeli Cooperative Programs.

Equipment 

$116.7 billion in funding would go towards stocking up on equipment — $98.6 billion of which is base funding and $18.1 billion is GWOT funding. This amount increased from the previous fiscal year by $12.5 billion and is $3 billion above the President’s budget request.

This bill allows the military to use funding for: nine Navy ships including three Littoral Combat Ships and two guided missile destroyers totalling $16.9 billion; $8.4 billion for 65 F-35 aircraft; $1.2 billion for 64 AH-64 helicopters; $3 billion for 16 P-8A Poseidon aircraft; $1.6 billion for 102 UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters; $2.3 billion for 12 KC-46 tanker aircraft; $660 million for seven EA-18G Growlers and $350 million for five F/A-18 Super Hornets (both aircraft); $315 million for Stryker lethality upgrades; and $55 million for the Israeli Cooperative Program Iron Dome.

Defense Health and Military Family Programs

There would $31.7 billion set aside for the Defense Health Program, which provides care for troops, military families, and retirees. This is $813 million below the President’s request, and $667 million less than the fiscal year 2015 enacted level — but covers estimated needs and requirements for fiscal year 2016.

Of this total, $252 million would go toward cancer research, $105 million to medical facility upgrades, $100 million for traumatic brain injury and psychological health research, $212 million for suicide prevention outreach programs, and $283 million for sexual assault prevention and response — all of which are increased beyond the President’s request.

Impact

Members of the military and their families, defense contractors, the Department of Defense, and U.S. national security.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 2685

$578.60 Billion
A CBO cost estimate is unavailable, but as listed above, this bill authorizes $578.6 billion in discretionary funding.

More Information

In-Depth: The House Appropriations Committee approved this legislation unanimously by a voice vote, a move that was praised by the Committee’s Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) who added that: 

“Now, more than ever, we must ensure that our troops and officers have the resources they need to protect this great nation and our way of life. This bill makes responsible use of every tax dollar to give our armed forces the resources they need to stay safe, prepared, and in peak fighting form.”

Despite this legislation’s smooth sailing through committee, it appears rougher waters lie ahead. The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (a presidential appointee) said that “the decision to circumvent rather than confront sequestration harms national security,” and President Obama has threatened to veto all budget bills that keep the sequester spending caps in place. Meanwhile, Senate Democrats have threatened to block the legislation if it does not allow for equal increases in non-defense spending.

Other provisions of the bill include:

Military Force Structure

This legislation ensures that the A-10 Warthog remains available for close air support, and also maintains the Army National Guard’s end strength and full-time support levels do not fall below what was established during the previous fiscal year.

Savings and Reductions to the President’s Request

Savings would come from the following areas: $1.15 billion from favorable foreign currency fluctuations, $814 million from lower than expected fuel costs, and $870 million in savings from rescissions of unused prior-year funding.


Media:


Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: Flickr user Official U.S. Navy Imagery)

AKA

Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2016

Official Title

Making appropriations for the Department of Defense for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2016, and for other purposes.

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house Passed June 11th, 2015
    Roll Call Vote 278 Yea / 149 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on Appropriations
    IntroducedJune 5th, 2015

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    Good grief. Our military spending is eating us alive. Let Saudi Arabia--who has a butt load U.S. military equipment--defend the Middle East against ISIS. Europe is never going to support any more action against Russia and we cannot get into a war with Putin no matter what. Make peace with Iran or let them takeover the Middle East if the Saudis don't care enough to get off their royal asses & defend themselves. And cut the damn defense budget. Americans have real domestic needs. Deal with them! *** if you can't face not running the entire world, reinstate the draft! Eternal, endless war is total insanity. You cannot expect the poor to do all the fighting & dying while your children go to Harvard & contribute nothing to the country--except spending the $$$ lobbyists pay you. This is NOT 1950. Grow up or use your useless brains & figure out a way to deal with domestic issues and quit feeding the war machine. Other generations managed. You can, too, if your pull up you britches and get to work.
    Like (28)
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    It's time to a fund programs that help Americans succeed!
    Like (13)
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    In 2010 our defense budget (GDP adjusted) was 822.74 Billion dollars. In 2015 our defense budget (GDP adjusted) is 694.48 Billion dollars. That's 128.26 Billion dollars LESS than it was 5 years ago. With the unrest in the Middle East, Iran's and North Korea's push to develop nuclear weapons, and with Russia and China building up their forces, flexing their muscles, and their incursions into disputed territories claimed by other countries, the LAST thing America should do is decrease defense spending.
    Like (12)
    Follow
    Share
    Too much money already spent for no reason. Defense and "world policing" are two different things
    Like (10)
    Follow
    Share
    I am not a general or high ranking armed forces official. Therefore, I am not an authority on how much funding we legitimately need for defense and should not attempt to act as one. This should be determined by those officials with intimate knowledge of the situation.
    Like (7)
    Follow
    Share
    I am completely opposed to our military intervention in the Middle East, Ukraine, South America, and everywhere else we seem to be destabilising governments. Of course, the CIA bears greatest responsibility, but they don't need any help.
    Like (6)
    Follow
    Share
    We need to take care of our active duty and our vets...period.
    Like (6)
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    Our military personnel have been trained for years to keep us safe. Now is not the time to place our military on a diet when our president is supporting world destabilization.
    Like (4)
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    If we cut our defense budget in half, the budget would still be bigger than most countries in the world.
    Like (3)
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    Why do we spend so much on defense spending? We spend more than the next bunch of nations on the list combined. We need to fund other programs and departments, things like education, making college more affordable/eliminating tuition, infrastructure, etc., not helping countries like Saudi Arabia fight ISIS when they were the ones who basically funded the creation of ISIS. Help our citizens at home, not our "allies" who create our problems.
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    The Defense budget is already to damn big.
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    We should not be funding and/or supporting Israel by any means or fashion. The situation in the Middle East should be resolve by those countries situated in the region without interference of outside powers. Israel has broken many international laws and codes and yet the United States is assisting to their atrocities. This issue has been pulled out for too long and it is about time the United States acts the way it should pre Six Day War when it officially allied with the Israeli Government. Do the moral thing and do not do this as domestic affairs are far greater than foreign issues at this time. I have studied Foreign relations for half of my life and continue to study as I grow older. With that you should heed my knowledge as it is far greater than any on Capitol Hill or The White House.
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    We need a strong military now more than ever. This would increase funding for critical areas and help us keep our country safe. Specifically, some of the discretionary funding should go towards the Missile Defense Agency and advanced military sciences.
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    The U.S. spends far too much on defense. The money could be spent more effectively elsewhere.
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    It's time for the world to fear the BMFITV! Vietnam 1965 get it?
    Like (1)
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    The military should have the pay raise that's included in the bill, first and foremost. My dad served in two wars and retired after 20 years of service. All things being equal, how did non nationals get to work for our military? There is much more then meets the eye in this one. Head and heart, this one needs to have closer scrutiny. I'm not in the military, but I understand the way things function in it, to an extent. I'm just saying let's not just dismiss this and pass it on face value. Because it has DOD written on it, is not good enough to get a pass. From what I understand, the DOD doesn't have audits done anyway. I know it's blasphemy to question the military, but it is tax payer funded after all. The right say we need to be fiscally responsible. That is so very true, absolutely we should be. So how is this any different?
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    I don't need your machine I don't need your ghetto scene
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    Great investment of US tax $$. Keeps us safe and prosperous. Pay people who work very hard/sacrifice (versus welfare to pay people who don't work). Numerous economic spinoffs from DOD r&D.
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    Congress' (by law) is required to "provide for the common defense." Start a new trend and do your do your required job.
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    We need a strong defense at all times in this day and age. I'm not suggesting we go out and start wars or get into wars that we shouldn't be in, like in the past, but a strong military would show that we are ready to protect ourselves and our allies.
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