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Reed, Wicker Applaud Senate Passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024

Today, the United States Senate passed S. 2226, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024, by a broad, bipartisan vote of 86-11.

During the floor debate, more than 900 amendments were considered, and 121 amendments were adopted – the most amendments adopted to the Senate NDAA in years.

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Jack Reed (D-RI) released the following statement praising Senate passage of the legislation:

“This forward-looking defense bill will go a long way toward keeping the American people safe, deterring conflict, and confronting the national security threats we face. This bipartisan NDAA provides a historic level of support for our troops and their families, including the largest military pay raise in decades. It authorizes record-level investments in the people, platforms, and programs that our forces need to safeguard the nation and advance U.S. interests worldwide. The bill also accelerates the development of cutting-edge technologies like hypersonics and artificial intelligence to provide our forces with key advantages on the battlefield.

“Our bipartisan approach netted a major win for America’s military men and women and their families. I appreciate Majority Leader Schumer and Minority Leader McConnell for working to facilitate a thorough debate that allowed all senators to engage and contribute to this bill. I salute Senator Wicker for his continued leadership and partnership. I look forward to working together in conference to produce a strong NDAA that takes on the real threats facing our military.”

Ranking Member Roger Wicker (R-MS) also commented on the bill:

“Although I would have preferred a topline defense spending number that better reflects the most dangerous threat environment that the United States has faced since World War II, I appreciate the hard work that the Senate has put into this year’s NDAA. The bill we have delivered takes care of our troops with a substantial pay raise and reforms that will improve quality of life for our servicemen and women. We are also taking pivotal steps toward the monumental investments in our naval power, munitions capacity, and defense industrial base that the moment demands. The bill also harnesses defense innovation through procurement reform and investments in high-tech research.

“The Congress once again has an opportunity to send an unmistakable message to China and Russia that we are stalwart in our commitment to a ‘peace through strength’ agenda. I am hopeful that working alongside the House, we will send a bill to the president’s desk that puts our national defense on a path toward improving our deterrent capabilities. I am especially grateful for the partnership of Chairman Reed on my first NDAA as ranking member.”

The 63rd annual NDAA supports a total of $886 billion in fiscal year 2024 funding for national defense. Within this topline, the legislation authorizes $845 billion for the Department of Defense (DOD) and $32 billion for national security programs within the Department of Energy (DOE).

NDAA highlights include:

  • Provides for a 5.2 percent pay raise for both military servicemembers and the DOD civilian workforce, and helps lower housing, healthcare, and childcare costs for military families.
  • Supports requested funding for the procurement of naval vessels, combat aircraft, armored vehicles, weapon systems, and munitions.
  • Authorizes the full budget request for the Pacific Deterrence Initiative (PDI) and the European Deterrence Initiative (EDI).
  • Establishes the Indo-Pacific Campaigning Initiative to facilitate increased U.S. military exercises, freedom of navigation operations, and partner engagements in the region.
  • Establishes a comprehensive training, advising, and institutional capacity-building program for the military forces of Taiwan.
  • Supports the development of the security partnership among Australia, United Kingdom, and the United States, known as AUKUS.
  • Fully funds and extends the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) through fiscal year 2027.
  • Streamlines the acquisition of defense stocks related to Ukraine and authorizes additional munitions for multiyear procurement contracts.
  • Authorizes improvements to the quality and oversight of military enlisted barracks, including the replacement of substandard barracks.
  • Authorizes increased funding for the military services' recruiting and advertising activities.
  • Authorizes significant funding for game-changing technologies like microelectronics, hypersonic weapons, and unmanned aircraft systems.
  • Enhances deterrence by recapitalizing and modernizing the U.S. nuclear triad; ensuring the safety, security, and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, delivery systems, and infrastructure; increasing capacity in theater and homeland missile defense; and strengthening nonproliferation programs.
  • Provides predictability and stability for the nation’s supply chain and industrial base workforce to move forward with critical programs and acquisitions.

The FY24 NDAA also serves as a legislative vehicle for a number of non-defense authorizations, including several major authorization bills from other committees. The full text of the bill, including all adopted amendments, will be published on this week.

In the coming months, leaders from the Senate and House of Representatives will meet in conference to reconcile the two chambers’ versions of the NDAA to produce a compromise bill.

The full text, report, and executive summary of the SASC-passed NDAA can be viewed here.