House defense bill advances to floor with 650 amendments

By Tony Bertuca / July 12, 2022 at 8:49 PM

The House Rules Committee has voted to include 650 amendments in the fiscal year 2023 defense authorization bill scheduled to debated on the floor by lawmakers this week.

House lawmakers had submitted more than 1,200 amendments to the committee for consideration.

House Rules Committee Chairman James McGovern (D-MA) said the current bill represents the largest number of proposed amendments the panel has ever had to consider on a single piece of legislation.

House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-WA) said he wanted to deliver a message to lawmakers from both parties: "We don't need 1,200 amendments."

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), the ranking GOP defense authorizer, asked his colleagues to remember in the future that the bill is a defense authorization "not an omnibus."

The White House, meanwhile, listed its objections to the bill a statement of administration policy released today, but did not threaten a veto.

One amendment included by progressive Democrats, though it is unlikely pass the full House, would reverse the House Armed Services Committee’s provision authorizing an additional $37 billion in defense spending.

Meanwhile, Smith was able to include an amendment that would allow the Navy to retire nine Littoral Combat Ships, reversing the committee’s work to include a provision in the bill requiring the service to keep five.

Another amendment would block funding for replacing the current version of nuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles and simply extend the life of the Minuteman III.

The bill also contains progressive-backed amendments that would repeal the authorizations for the use of military force in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Watch Inside Defense for further coverage.