Wyden Votes No on Massive Military Policy Bill
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) issued the following statement after voting against the National Defense Authorization Act today.
“I appreciate my colleagues’ hard work to assemble this bill, which makes important improvements to U.S. defense policy. In particular, I support increasing pay for service members and civilians employees of the Defense Department, improved mental health services, extending paid parental leave and increasing funding for children and military dependents with severe disabilities.
“However, I ultimately had no choice but to oppose this bill. The 2021 NDAA fails to reform wasteful defense contracts, does not sufficiently address the scourge of sexual assault in our armed forces and actually increases defense spending by $28 billion, despite the drawdown from Afghanistan. In fact, this bill spends billions more than even requested by the Biden Administration. This increased spending comes while the Pentagon still has not created a comprehensive approach to combat widespread fraud in the $420 billion worth of contracts it is responsible for each year. Furthermore, this body failed to address critical intelligence and cybersecurity oversight issues, by excluding the bipartisan Intelligence Authorization Act in the final defense bill. Finally, Congress did not even have the opportunity to vote on repealing the authorization for the 2003 war on Iraq, despite bicameral, bipartisan support for reversing that flawed decision. For these reasons, I voted ‘no.'”
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