Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), chair of the House Armed Services Committee, said Tuesday that he wants Congress to pass a supplemental spending bill this year to address so-called threats from China, Defense News reported.
Rogers’ comments come after President Biden signed legislation into law on the debt ceiling deal reached between the White House and House Republicans that includes a massive $886 billion military budget for 2024. But for hawks in Congress, $886 billion isn’t enough.
Rogers said once Congress completes the 2024 National Defense Authorization Act and related appropriation bills, then it will be “time for us to look and see if we actually address China. If we did, fine. If we didn’t, we’ll go ahead and drop more funding. It’s all about China for me.”
Under the debt ceiling deal, emergency supplemental funds are exempt from spending caps, and hawks are looking to use them to increase military spending. The $113 billion in spending on the war in Ukraine that Congress has authorized to date was done through emergency supplemental bills, meaning there’s no limit on Ukraine aid.
Rogers suggested Ukraine funding should be reduced in the future as he thinks China should be the focus. “Based on how effective the counteroffensive is this summer, and if there is a ceasefire or some resolution by the end of September, I’ll probably have to revisit Ukraine then, at a much smaller level than anything we’ve done before,” he said.