McCain, Blumenthal

National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 1735)

Senator McCain: (5:02 PM)

  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "The NDAA is far too important to be held hostage in a budget negotiation. For 53 consecutive years the Congress has passed a National defense authorization act with threats to our national security multiplying around the world, I would hope that this year would be no different. I want to thank my colleague from Rhode Island for all of the hard work that he and his staff and members on that side of the aisle have done in order to have a legislation that passed overwhelmingly through the Senate Armed Services Committee, and I hope we can move forward on getting that legislation through the United States Senate, consultation and compromise with the House, and to the White House for the president's signature. And I would say again, I read carefully the administration's objection to the legislation as it now stands. These are not valid in some cases, in other cases we would be glad to negotiate with the White House as we go to conference with the house after completing this, but I sincerely hope and pray that there are so many provisions there that are important to the lives of the men and women who are serving in our military that I would hope the president would take into consideration how important this is to the men and women who are serving, to their lives, to their welfare, their equipment, their training, and their ability to defend this nation."

 

Senator McCain: (6:06 PM)

  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "The ranking member and I have asked all of our colleagues to can adhere to a filing deadline for first-degree amendments to the bill at 6:00 P.M. tomorrow, Tuesday. There are several hundred filed amendments already and those with further amendments should bring them down tomorrow by the close of business. I'd also like to add, my colleagues, I hope that we could agree to the filing deadline that will be approximately a week that we have been on the bill. I think hopefully that would be sufficient time for most of our colleagues or all of our colleagues to have time to file amendments. Senator Reed and I will continue the practice of allowing pending amendments, one on either side, and we will be able then to schedule votes on pending amendments one on either side. So I thank Senator Reed and I hope we can get a lot of debate and discussion. The Reed amendment is very important amendment, I respect Senator Reed's view on this issue, and we will let, obviously, the body decide. I do hope that colleagues understand that we have many, many filed amendments, and we'd like to get to as many of them as possible. We'd like to have as many members be able to have their amendments on this bill as they feel that is necessary."

 

Senator Blumenthal: (6:29 PM)

  • Spoke on the National Defense Authorization Act.
    • "The task before the Senate in the National Defense Authorization Act is nothing less than to craft a sustainable long-term strategy to defend America. In fact, it is to sustain our global leadership in a time of shifting alliances, significant challenges, emerging threats while bringing a long-term balance and sustainability to our military. This defense measure is a solid start, but it must be made stronger to better meet the needs of our military men and women and our nation, as we enter this supremely perilous time. The danger to America has never been greater. Our foes have never been more insidious and pernicious, and many of the states opposing us have never been more willing to take measures that fundamentally contravene not only our security but our sense of moral right and wrong."