The Senate Armed Services Committee voted to add $25 billion to President Biden’s proposed military budget for 2022, bringing the total to a whopping $778 billion.
The additional funds will go to the Pentagon and are meant to give military services’ weapons and training programs that were not covered by Biden’s budget request. The Pentagon will receive about $740 billion of the $778 billion, and the rest will go to other departments’ military spending, such as the Energy Department’s nuclear weapons programs.
The increase was added by a Republican-led amendment to the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), but it received bipartisan support. The NDAA passed the committee in a vote of 23-3. The committee is split almost evenly, with 12 Democrats, 13 Republicans, and one Independent.
Biden’s budget request was not enough for Republican hawks who don’t think the administration is doing enough to compete with China. The NDAA is far from being finalized. The committee’s version now needs to be approved by the Senate and then negotiated with the House.
Whether or not the $778 billion NDAA ends up being the final bill, the vote from the Senate Armed Services Committee is significant. It shows a bipartisan rebuke to Biden’s proposed budget, which was already massive.