U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, announced today that the Committee voted 23-3 to advance the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023. During the subcommittee and full committee markups of the legislation, the Committee considered 433 amendments and adopted 223 bipartisan amendments. The bill now heads to the Senate floor for consideration.
Senator Reed commented: “I am pleased the Armed Services Committee has continued its tradition of strong, bipartisan support in passing the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023. I am grateful to Ranking Member Inhofe for his many years of partnership and collaboration, and I am proud to have named this bill in his honor ahead of his well-deserved retirement. The committee held a robust debate and came together to support a bill that will help safeguard the nation against a range of evolving threats while supporting our troops both on and off the battlefield.
“This forward-looking NDAA invests in people, platforms, and infrastructure. It authorizes increased funding for our national defense and sets policies to equip, supply, and train U.S. forces now and in the future. It provides for military families while strengthening America’s industrial base and the workers who contribute to our national security. This year’s markup provides our troops and Defense Department civilians with a well-deserved 4.6 percent pay raise, as well as new tools and reforms to protect the health and well-being of our servicemembers and their families. The bill provides critical support for our allies and partners in Europe and the Indo-Pacific region and addresses other persistent threats around the globe. It strengthens our offensive and defensive cyber capabilities and accelerates research and development of advanced technologies like hypersonics and artificial intelligence that will give our forces critical advantages.
“I again commend Ranking Member Inhofe for his leadership and unwavering commitment to supporting our service members and their families. Congress must work on a bipartisan basis to ensure we have the policies and resources to deter America’s adversaries, reassure our allies, and ensure our forces have the right tools and capabilities to combat threats around the globe. Advancing this bill is a significant step toward achieving that objective.”
Senator Inhofe also commented: “The Senate Armed Services Committee just took a critical next step toward enacting a National Defense Authorization Act for the 62nd year in a row. This markup was bittersweet, because it’s my last after 27 years as a member of this committee. As this committee has always done for as long as I can remember, we came together in a bipartisan way to build a strong bill. We were able to strengthen national security in the face of unprecedented threats, including from China and Russia, and take care of our troops and their families, who sacrifice so much. It’s not the bill I would have written on my own, but it’s a good bill that deserves, and has rightfully earned, broad support.
“I am especially proud that for the second year in a row, the committee almost unanimously voted to approve my amendment with the Chairman that would boost the defense budget — this year by $45 billion. This is a demonstration of our commitment to our men and women in uniform and our willingness to compete, deter, and if necessary, defeat any adversaries who might threaten our American values and our way of life. I thank the Chairman and the whole committee for their work, and I look forward to considering it on the floor soon with an open amendment process, so we can continue to improve it.”
Committee approval is the first step in a months-long process to establish defense funding levels and set policies for the Defense Department and the Energy Department’s national security programs. The bill must now be debated and voted on by the full U.S. Senate. A separate measure will make its way through the U.S. House of Representatives. Once both the Senate and House pass their versions of the bill, they must then be reconciled in a bicameral conference committee, and then approved by each chamber before a final version may be sent to the President to be signed into law.
This marks the 62nd consecutive year that the Committee has come together on a bipartisan basis to advance a defense policy bill.
Click here for an executive summary of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023.
Cole Stevens (SASC Democrats), 202-224-8636
Marta Hernandez (SASC Republicans), 202-224-3871