House passes FY-23 defense policy bill with big bipartisan vote

By Tony Bertuca / July 14, 2022 at 6:32 PM

The House has voted 329-101 to pass its version of the fiscal year 2023 defense authorization bill, now awaiting the Senate to do the same so the legislation can enter conference committee negotiations in the coming weeks.

The massive annual bill includes, among a host of other things, authorization for a $37 billion increase in defense spending above what President Biden has requested.

House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-WA) said in a statement that “there is a lot to be proud of in this bill,” which Congress has passed for more than 60 straight years.

“At a time when democracies worldwide face both old and new threats, the FY-23 [defense authorization bill] supports investments in what makes our country competitive around the world and strong here at home: a diverse and talented military and civilian workforce; groundbreaking science and technology research, especially at Historically Black Colleges and Universities; and the alliances and partnerships we need to meet our biggest global security challenges,” he said.

Smith also highlighted the 4.6% pay raise for military service members and civilian personnel.

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), the committee’s ranking member, praised the bill’s “overwhelming bipartisan support.”

“However, our work is not done -- we will continue to improve upon this bill in conference to ensure that this legislation gives our warfighters what they need,” he said in a statement.

The Senate Armed Services Committee, which passed a version of the bill last month that would authorize $45 billion more than Biden has requested, is not expected to file the legislation with the full Senate until early next week.

Meanwhile, House lawmakers since yesterday have considered and debated dozens of proposed amendments on the floor.