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Posts Tagged ‘Congress/DOD’

House Introduces CR with Limited Extras

  • September 9, 2014
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House Republicans on Tuesday introduced a continuing resolution to keep the federal government running through Dec. 11, while also advancing several urgent needs. The most controversial provision in the fiscal 2015 stopgap measure would extend the Export-Import Bank through June 30, 2015. The provision is opposed by conservative Republicans and could cause them to withhold support for the bill, but the loss of those votes is not expected to jeopardize passage in the House …

Many ‘Most Vulnerable’ Democrats Sit on Armed Services Panels

  • September 8, 2014
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A number of Democrats ranked as “most vulnerable” by CQ Roll Call to losing their re-election bids in November sit on their chamber’s Armed Services Committee. With the committees’ chairmen — Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) — set to retire at the end of the current session, the potential exists for a fair amount of reshuffling on the two panels, reported CQ. Of course, a Republican takeover of the Senate can be expected to have more far-reaching consequences. Three of the 10 most vulnerable senators are Democrats on that chamber’s Armed Services Committee — Kay Hagan (N.C.), Mark Udall (Colo.) and Jeanne Shaheen (N.H.). In the House, three of the 10 most vulnerable members are Democrats on the Armed Services Committee —Ron Barber (Ariz.), Bill Enyart (Ill.) and Scott Peters (Calif.). The most vulnerable list of House members also includes one Republican on the panel — Mike Coffman (Colo.).

Pentagon to Keep Spotlight on Administrative Reforms, Hagel Says

  • September 8, 2014
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Administrative reforms at DOD will continue to be a priority despite renewed threats around the globe, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told reporters Monday in Turkey. “As many of these more immediate threats that face our country and the world … must be a priority, that said, we also have other responsibilities,” Hagel said, reported Defense News. There will be a “continued focus on the reform measures that we have undertaken” — including changes within acquisition, healthcare and the nuclear force …

Thornberry Firmly against Holding a BRAC Round Soon

  • September 8, 2014
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Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), considered the frontrunner to replace Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) in the next Congress as chair of the Armed Services Committee, told supporters of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., last week that he opposes conducting a new round of base closures in the near future. “I don’t think you are going to see a BRAC anytime soon. We haven’t paid for the last one …

Congress Focuses on CR

  • September 7, 2014
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Passing a continuing resolution (CR) to keep the federal government running in the new fiscal year is one of Congress’ highest priorities before it breaks for the November elections, with House lawmakers planning to begin work on the measure this week. At this point, the fiscal 2015 stopgap is expected to last through Dec. 11 or 12, allowing lawmakers to tackle a year-end spending measure during a lame-duck session. After last year’s government shutdown, congressional leaders will resist adding provisions that could disrupt the bill’s progress, but lawmakers still will try to boost pet programs or address policy issues in the measure …

House Looks to Move Clean CR

  • September 4, 2014
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The short-term continuing resolution (CR) the House takes up next week to keep the government running after Sept. 30 will largely be free of pet provisions requested by lawmakers. As the only legislation Congress is likely to advance before the November elections, the stopgap will attract numerous requests from members to include favored projects or other policy riders, but only a handful of special provisions are likely to be included, reports CQ. House Republicans likely will include several “anomalies” in the CR, including a short-term extension of the Export-Import Bank and, possibly, extra funds to fight wildfires and to handle border security …

Pentagon Spending Plans Far Exceed Budget Caps, Analyst Says

  • September 4, 2014
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When defense officials rolled out the department’s five-year spending plan in March, they acknowledged it exceeded the 2011 Budget Control Act limits by $116 billion and would require congressional action to relax the caps. The actual cost of funding the Pentagon’s fiscal 2015-2019 budget may require $200 billion to $300 billion in additional spending, however, due to a number of assumptions that are unlikely to be realized, according to a new report from the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. One shortcoming of the five-year plan is its failure to fund the force structure called for in the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review and 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance …

Global Unrest Creates Possible Opening to Relax Spending Caps

  • September 2, 2014
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The rise of the Islamic State along with other emerging threats could provide an opening for lawmakers to reverse defense cuts, or at least offer the Pentagon additional flexibility to respond to the threats, but it’s not yet clear that such an effort could succeed at this point, budget experts say. As the number of hotspots expands across the globe, talk about various options Congress could pursue to pay for a military response — including ongoing airstrikes in Iraq and possible ones in Syria — has been on the upswing …

Pentagon Embarks on New Streamlining Campaign

  • September 1, 2014
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The Defense Department is preparing to launch a new initiative to reduce overhead and administrative costs in the office of the secretary of defense and the 16 defense agencies, according to Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work. The effort, which will bypass the military services and combatant commands, will partially rely on outside experts from the Defense Business Board and Business Executives for National Security …

House Republicans Likely to Push for Longer CR

  • August 25, 2014
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While both parties agree on the need to pass a stopgap spending bill in September, a dispute may break out over how long it should last. With the potential for Republicans to gain control of the Senate next year, some House Republicans may push for a fiscal 2015 continuing resolution (CR) to extend until sometime in 2015. Democrats, however, want the stopgap to end in December so lawmakers can hash out a deal on an omnibus after the midterm elections. “This could lead to a real standoff,” a senior House Republican leadership aide told Government Executive …

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