Senate Passes $630 Billion Pentagon Bill

Bill Skips Amendment Stage, Irking Republicans

$632.8 billion worth of military spending was approved late Thursday night by the Senate in a 84-15 vote, moving the bill, approved last week in the House, to President Obama for a signature.

The bill backtracked on the sequestration plans this year, erasing some $22 billion in cuts supposed to be made. That’s still well short of Pentagon demands, as they’d sought not only that sequestration would be shelved, but that another $54 billion be tacked on on top of that.

The bill was condemned by several Republicans for ignoring traditional Senate rules on offering amendments. Many had sought to tack on an Iran sanctions bill to guarantee its passage, and Sen. John McCain (R – AZ) condemned the process as “shameful.”

The final bill also added some provisions on the military’s ongoing sexual assault scandal, but Sen. Gillibrand’s (D – NY) provision to reduce commanding officers’ discretion on the matter was rejected, meaning she will have to try again next year.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.