Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and James Inhofe (R-Okla.) said Monday that both chambers need to ensure a defense bill can be signed into law for a 52nd straight year.
The Senate was working on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which authorizes more than $600 billion in defense spending for the Pentagon, before leaving for a two-week Thanksgiving break.
“We have not missed in 52 years,” Levin said. “We cannot fail this year and the only practical way to avoid failure is to follow the course that Sen. Inhofe and I have proposed to this body.”
Reps. Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) have introduced a resolution that calls on President Obama to fulfill his promise to release 28 classified pages of a 2002 report on the 9/11 attacks against the United States.
November 21, 2013, 04:31 pm
By Ramsey Cox and Jeremy Herb
Senate Republicans blocked Democrats from ending debate on the annual funding bill.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) filed a motion to end debate on the defense authorization bill Wednesday evening.
That move sets up a procedural vote after 30 hours of debate — though the vote could come sooner if there is agreement.
The Senate is debating the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which authorizes more than $625 billion in defense spending for the Pentagon.
Senate Democrats filed an amendment to the national defense bill Wednesday that would require more transparency on national surveillance programs.
Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said the amendment would require the administration to respond to unanswered questions from lawmakers about the domestic surveillance program that collected phone data on U.S. citizens. He said the amendment would also make public decisions by the “secret FISA court” that approves data collection under the National Surveillance Act (NSA) programs.
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) announced his support Wednesday for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-N.Y.) sexual assault amendment to the defense authorization bill.
“I will vote in favor of her proposal,” Durbin said on the Senate floor.
Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) said Wednesday that removing military commanders from the process of reporting military sexual assaults would “weaken” their effectiveness.
“I believe we will make the most progress on this issue by including commanders,” Reed said on the Senate floor. “I believe commanders have to be involved in every step.”
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) made her pitch Wednesday on the Senate floor for her military sexual assault amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
S. 1197 authorizes more than $625 billion in defense spending for the Pentagon. Some protections for victims of sexual assault were included during committee markup of the NDAA, such as providing a lawyer for victims and criminalizing retaliation against victims who report assaults. But Gillibrand and most of the other female senators have said the underlying bill doesn’t go far enough.
November 19, 2013, 05:26 pm
By Ramsey Cox and Jeremy Herb
The amendment would have restricted the transfer of detainees for at least one year.
Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich) said it was “critically important” that the Senate passes a defense authorization bill this week.
“It is critically important that this bill passes this week,” Levin said on the Senate floor Tuesday. “Otherwise there is very little hope that we could get a bill back from conference and passed in both houses in time.”
The Senate is considering the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which authorizes more than $625 billion in defense spending for the Pentagon.