The House Armed Services Committee today approved a record $690 billion military spending budget for fiscal year 2012. The bill includes a $553 billion base budget, as well as $119 in emergency spending on wars. Other spending on nuclear weapons were also included.
The vote does not actually pass the budget into law but does move it forward. Though it is somewhat larger than the $668.6 billion budget in 2011, officials are spinning it as a cut from the $709 billion hypothetical budget once requested by President Obama, but never actually passed.
Despite the nation’s current financial struggles, the vote for the massive outlay of war spending was not close, with the bill passing the committee 60-1. The only panel member who voted against the bill was Rep. John Garamendi (D – CA), who complained that it extends the war in Afghanistan as well as delaying the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
Rep. Garamendi was one of eight members of Congress who sent a letter to President Obama earlier this week urging him to end the Afghan War.