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House Democrats Help Republicans Pass $700B in Military Spending

A record spending bill overwhelmingly approved by the House on Tuesday authorizes $700 billion for the U.S. military.

House Democrats Help Republicans Pass $700B in Military Spending

A record spending bill overwhelmingly approved by the House on Tuesday authorizes $700 billion for the U.S. military.

The annual National Defense Authorization Act earmarks over $634 billion for the Pentagon and an additional $66 billion for overseas military conflicts including Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria. The package includes $12.3 billion for the Pentagon's Missile Defense Agency, a moved aimed at North Korea.

 

The total is nearly $100 billion more than President Trump requested earlier this year. It calls for 90 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, 20 more than requested; 24 Navy F/A-18 Super Hornets, 10 more than requested; and 13 new Navy ships, five more than requested.

 

In a year of bitter partisan fights over healthcare, tax reform, and immigration, the House approved it with rare unity. The final vote was 356-70, including 127 out of the House's 194 Democratic members. The bill now goes to the Senate, where it's expected to be easily approved. An earlier Senate version was passed by a 89-8 margin. The nearly uniform Democratic support comes despite initial pledges to oppose Trump's proposed military spending increase, which was smaller than what they have now approved.

 

The U.S. accounts for about one-third of global military expenditures, outspending China by three to one and Russia by ten to one.

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