U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Armed Services
12/07/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/07/2021 21:31
Democratic-Led House Passes Bipartisan, Bicameral NDAA Agreement
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Representative Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, today issued the following statement after the House of Representatives passed S. 1605, the bipartisan, bicameral text of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22), by a vote of 363-70.
"For more than six decades, the National Defense Authorization Act has served as the legislative foundation for policymakers to steer U.S. national security priorities. I am proud that this year's NDAA will include transformational policy reforms that will benefit our service members and their families, take on the military sexual assault crisis, and deliver results for other national security priorities of the American people.
"Thanks to the hard work of Democrats, this year's bill invests in what makes our country strong: Our growing economy, rich diversity, technological innovation, critical alliances and partnerships, democratic values, and our service members. When we prioritize these sources of national strength, we are creating fair opportunity for local communities across our country while protecting our national security. That's why the FY22 NDAA supports a 2.7 percent pay raise for U.S. service members, reforms the Uniform Code of Military Justice to address the sexual assault crisis in our military, contains measures to ensure our military is diverse and inclusive, and equips the Department of Defense to support the Biden-Harris Administration's whole-of-government response to the climate crisis.
"This bill represents compromise between both parties and chambers - as a result, every single member involved has something in it they like and something that didn't get into the bill that they wish had. This year's procedural realities made the entire process exponentially more difficult. When we get to the end of this arduous process, we often forget the hundreds of provisions we came to agreement on and focus solely on where we could not come to agreement. Ultimately, our responsibility as a Congress to provide for the common defense supersedes these areas of disagreement, making the substance of this bill and its signature into law critical.
"As this crucial legislation now moves to the Senate, I thank my colleagues across the House and Senate Armed Services Committees for their work on this agreement and its two underlying bills. Expeditious passage of S. 1605 by the Senate and signature by President Biden will strengthen our national security by giving these critical reforms the force of law."
The FY22 NDAA builds on previous attempts to close the pay gap by authorizing support for a 2.7 percent pay increase for our service men and women in uniform, makes historic and sweeping changes to the Uniform Code of Military Justice to combat sexual assault in the military, authorizes record funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, contains measures to ensure our military is diverse and inclusive, makes key investments to address the threat of climate change and bolster energy resiliency across the Department of Defense, and takes full advantage of our diverse talent pool to meet the complex national security challenges of today and tomorrow.
For the sixty-first consecutive year, Congress will enact essential legislation to fulfill its critical constitutional obligation to "provide for the common defense" by leaning forward to improve quality of life for our service members, support our workforce, and fortify our military's technological advantage by ensuring our nation has the right tools to succeed in strategic competition with China and Russia, while also continuing to grapple with the effects of a global pandemic and a corresponding shift in our economy, a crisis of racial injustice, and a deepening climate emergency.