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Moore only Alabama congress member to vote against NDAA

The bill moves to Biden’s desk to be signed into law.

Rep. Barry Moore

On Thursday, U.S. Rep. Barry Moore, R-Enterprise, was the only member of the Alabama delegation to vote against the $886 billion National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024. 

According to a press release by Moore he was motivated to vote against the legislation because he did not want to support funding President Joe Biden’s and the Democratic Party’s “radical agenda.” The annual bill always receives extensive bipartisan support and forces lawmakers to compromise often to support national defense. 

“This version of the NDAA forces American taxpayers to fund abortion travel, sex reassignment surgeries, a one-year reauthorization of FISA with no reforms, which allows weaponized government to spy on Americans, and critical race theory initiatives teaching that our nation’s enemies are not abroad, but within our own citizens and military,” Moore said. “Earlier this year, I proudly supported the House version of this legislation, which was truly focused on military readiness and service member needs. I am disappointed that divisive policies which hold service members and taxpayers hostage to the Democrats’ radical agenda have been included in this bill, and I cannot support it.”

The Department of Defense (DOD) policy only reimburses the travel associated with military members seeking abortion or other healthcare procedures that may be prohibited in a state they are involuntarily placed. The bill also provides a 5.2 percent pay increase to military members which is the highest in 20 years.

Although this version of the bill passed without Moore getting everything he wanted there were still conservative policies that were included in the legislation:

  • Targeting the hiring of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) personnel and limiting the pay of military members whose jobs are primarily associated with DEI.
  • Prohibiting the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in the military.
  • Provides provisions to support the Border Wall and funds deployment of National Guardsmen to support Border Patrol.
  • Prohibits unapproved flags such as the Pride Flag from being displayed at military installations.

Moore, who currently represents Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District, is running for the 1st Congressional District in 2024. This is due to a recent federal lawsuit forcing Alabama to redraw their congressional map after a court ruled the map discriminated and diluted the power of Black voters.

Because of a new congressional map changing the demographics in the 1st and 2nd Congressional Districts, Moore decided to run for the 1st because it is now deemed one of the most conservative in the country. 

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However, Rep. Jerry Carl, R-Mobile, already holds the seat. Carl, who has said he is up for the challenge of campaigning against Moore, voted in favor of the NDAA. Carl provided APR with a comment criticizing Moore’s vote against the national defense bill.

“Barry Moore voted against giving our troops a pay raise, against securing our border, and against building the wall,” Carl said. “However, Barry Moore voted to keep CRT training and DEI initiatives in our military. It’s disappointing to see him vote against these conservative priorities, but what do we expect from a show horse who likes to talk the talk but not walk the walk?”

Moore issued a response to Carl’s comment saying his vote gave support to Biden’s radical policies, the renewal of spying on Americans under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and millions of dollars to Ukraine.

“Jerry Carl voted to pass a 3,000 page monstrosity that uses taxpayer dollars to fund abortion travel, sex reassignment surgeries, Biden’s radical climate initiatives, and a Pentagon DEI office that will continue to push critical race theory initiatives. He also voted to reauthorize FISA until April 2025 with no reforms, which will allow our weaponized government to continue to spy on Americans and Biden’s political opponents like President Trump without a warrant. In addition, Carl voted to send $600 million to Ukraine after just stating he was going to stop sending them millions in taxpayer dollars while America’s infrastructure is crumbling and our southern border is being invaded. But this is what you expect from someone who has always voted for ‘business as usual’ since coming to Congress. Workhorses work for the American people; show horses provide gift horses to Ukraine. I may be standing alone for the unborn and against spying on American citizens today among my Alabama colleagues, but I’m proud to stand beside fighters like Jim Jordan and Byron Donalds in Washington, D.C.”

Many analysts on both sides of the aisle have criticized the reauthorization of FISA under Section 702 of the bill. Under the provision the American government is able to spy on the communications of foreigners across the world. However, this can also allow eavesdropping on the communications of American citizens abroad. 

Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Weaver, the Armed Services Committee Chairman and sponsor of the 2024 NDAA, provided a comment to APR regarding the passage of the bill.

“310 House Members and 87 Senators agree — this year’s NDAA has never been more vital,” Rogers said. “Folks who voted for this year’s NDAA voted for a historic pay raise for our troops, a ban on teaching CRT, border wall construction, and a DOD audit. For Alabamians, this bill is critical. Alabama plays an important role in our nation’s defense and $316.6 billion of this bill will go to ensure this continues for years to come. From barracks to shipyards — this bill is good for Alabama.”

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Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Selma, also voted for the bill citing key provisions like the pay raise for troops and expansion of DOD’s partnership with HBCU’s.

“I am absolutely thrilled that we secured a number of key wins in this year’s NDAA including a 5.2 percent pay raise for Alabama’s 37,000 service members and a record $150 million in research funding for our nation’s HBCUs and MSIs (Minority Serving Institutions),” Sewell said. “The talented students, faculty, and researchers at these cherished institutions are an asset to our national security, and we must continue to invest in their success.”

The bill moves to Biden’s desk to be signed into law.

Patrick Darrington is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected].

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