House Passes $700 Billion Military Spending Bill

Senate Expected to Pass Compromise Bill Soon

The House and Senate had some differences on the 2018 military spending bill, but reached a compromise last week. The House passed this $700 billion spending and policy bill Tuesday with a 356-70 vote.

The bill includes $634 billion for “core operations,” and $66 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO). The OCO budget is notoriously used by the Pentagon to shift money around to various programs as officials see fit without having to ask Congress to fund them.

This massive bill is the culmination of months of officials trying to outspend one another, with President Trump proposing what he described as one of the biggest increases ever, followed by both houses of Congress outdoing that, and then trying to outdo each other.

This bill includes funding for myriad new research schemes, including the possibility of creating a new Space Corps and fighting wars in space. It also attempts to assert more Armed Services Committee oversight over military cyber operations.

The bill also, as previously reported, will require President Trump to submit the details of his strategy in North Korea to Congress, and to provide annual updates on any changes that strategy has seen.

The Senate has not yet voted on this bill, though it is expected it will pass with a wide margin. President Trump is also expected to sign the bill without any further objections on the matter.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.