December 8, 2020
Webster Votes in Support of Men and Women in Uniform
Washington, DC - Florida Congressman Daniel Webster (R-Clermont) today released the following statement after voting to pass the Conference Report for the William (Mac) Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act for FY21.
“The U.S. Constitution states that providing for the ‘common defense’ is one of our fundamental responsibilities. This conference report builds on our actions last Congress to provide for our national defense by fully funding nuclear modernization, investing in chemical and biological threat reduction, and increasing funding to maintain our technological advantages.
“At a level not seen since WWII, we face significant threats from near peer adversaries like China and Russia as well as rogue states like Iran and North Korea. Ensuring the ability to counter these threats from China, Russia, Iran in all domains – land, sea, air, space and cyberspace is more critical than ever.
“Our freedom, our families, and our way of life would not exist were it not for our military. This bill builds on pay raises provided in recent years by authorizing another 3%. It supports our military families by improving oversight and accountability of government-owned family military housing and making improvements to military child-care centers.
“While the bill is not perfect, I thank Rep. Thornberry and members of the House Armed Services Committee for their work developing this legislation, particularly their opposition to proposals that would have imposed unnecessary restrictions and harmed national security. We owe our military a debt we can never repay.”
Highlights of the Conference Report for H.R. 6395 – Mac Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act:
- Provides $740.5B for national defense discretionary programs, as requested by the President and consistent with the bipartisan budget agreement.
- Provides our troops a 3% pay raise, authorizes extra pay for troops in combat zones, and supports their families with the care and benefits they deserve.
- Continues to fund nuclear modernization to keep our nuclear deterrent safe and reliable.
- Funds the new B-21 stealth bomber, Columbia-Class ballistic missile submarine, and Ground Base Strategic Deterrent.
- Establishes the Pacific Deterrence Initiative to fund emergent technologies, support our allies, and deter China.
- Authorizes several new provisions to counter Chinese industrial espionage, support Hong Kong and Taiwan, and protect our defense supply chain.
- Continues to fund the European Deterrence Initiative to support our allies and counter Russian aggression.
- Establishes sanctions for Turkey’s acquisition of the S-400 and expands sanctions on Russia for Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
- Increases investments into advanced weapons system, autonomous systems, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E), including funding an additional Virginia-Class submarine, 93 F-35 aircraft, 12 F-15EX, 24 Super Hornets, as well as additional Apaches, Blackhawks, Abrams tanks, and Strykers.
- Maintains prohibitions on the transfer of dangerous terrorists from Guantanamo Bay.
- Continues to support missile defense cooperation with Israel and includes the United States-Israel Assistance Act.
- Does not include “red flag” gun control provision or provisions that would have curtailed the President’s authority under the Insurrection Act or to deploy the National Guard.
- Ensures DOD maintains a 30-day supply of PPE, ensures our troops have the diagnostic equipment and testing they need, and provides health benefits to Guardsmen supporting the COVID-19 response.