By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Thursday, December 8, 2016, the US Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017 Conference Report. US Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) said that the NDAA gives America’s fighting men and women their largest pay increase in six years.
Sen. Shelby said in a statement, “I believe that one of Congress’ most important responsibilities is to ensure that our military is equipped to defend our nation both at home and abroad. While this bill is not perfect, the NDAA supports our men and women in uniform with the resources that they need and addresses the Obama Administration’s dangerous underfunding of our military. This legislation also gives our troops the largest pay increase in six years and makes much-needed improvements to our military health care system. I’m proud to support the NDAA to ensure that we have a highly trained, well-equipped, and properly funded military to protect us.”
Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) also voted in favor of the NDAA. Sen. Cruz said in his own statement, “This legislation is a major step toward improving readiness and enhancing the ability of our servicemen and women to defend our nation. The NDAA is not a perfect piece of legislation; inevitably bills of its size and scope fail to address every concern and often interfere in issues unrelated to a bill’s core mission. However, the damage done to our military by its own civilian leadership over the past eight years has placed our service members in a precarious position. The world is more dangerous now than at any point in my lifetime. Every single military leader that came to the Hill this year told us he or she was in dire need of assistance; that readiness is suffering, equipment is on the verge of obsolescence and that our adversaries have rapidly closed a once daunting technological gap. Given our current global commitments and the tremendous challenges facing the new administration, I believe it is imperative to equip our military commanders with the necessary authorities to begin the tough task ahead.”
Sen. Cruz said, “I am proud to have my earned colleagues’ support for many key provisions I fought to include in the NDAA to address these challenges and strengthen our national security. Equally as important, this final legislation dropped the misguided effort to mandate that young women enroll in the Selective Service and make themselves eligible for conscripted combat service.”
The House has already passed the NDAA.
US Representative Martha Roby (R-Montgomery) said in a statement, “The Senate just passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to give our troops a pay raise and the resources they need to do their jobs and keep Americans safe.”
Congresswoman Roby said, “The bill is on its way to the President’s desk. I’m hoping this critical legislation is signed into law for the 55th consecutive year!”
Senator Richard Shelby previously represented Alabama in the House and in the State Senate before his election to the US Senate in 1986.