FY 2009 Defense Department authorization

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Summary (how summaries work)
The FY 2009 Defense Department budget was comprised of two separate bills:
  • An authorization bill (the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2009 - S.3001) to "authorize" spending for certain programs, and
  • An appropriations bill to actually allocate the money.

The bills cover the government's 2009 fiscal year, from October 1, 2008 through September 30, 2009.

The authorization bill passed the House on September 24, 2008, followed closely by the Senate on September 27. It was signed into law on October 14, 2008. The final bill represented a compromise between the House and Senate versions.



Contents

Bill Summary

The final version of the bill authorized $611 billion in funding for the Department of Defense and Department of Energy. This included

  • a 3.9 percent pay raise for military personnel,
  • limits on health care fee increases
  • $68 billion in war spending for Iraq and Afghanistan
  • and funding for various weapons systems.[1]

The bill also included restrictions on Pentagon spending in Iraq, particularly on the use of military funds for Iraqi infrastructure projects. The bill also required the Bush administration to give Congress the chance to review any potential status of forces agreement with Iraq, but did not require Congressional approval of such an agreement. In response to a veto threat, the bill's authors modified several provisions and removed a ban on the use of private contractors for interrogations.[1]

House version

The House version of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2009 was introduced in the House on March 31, 2008 as H.R. 5658. [2]

Before the bill passed the House, the House defeated an amendment from Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) that would have increased the budget for the Missile Defense Agency by $719 million.[3]


Same for all scorecards:

Scored vote

Scorecard: National Journal 2008 House Scorecard

Org. position: Nay

Description:

"Add $719 million for missile defense systems. May 22. (186-229)"

(Original scorecard available at: http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/cs_20090228_4813.php)

The bill then passed the House on May 22, 2008 by a vote of 384-23.[4]

Senate version


The Senate's version of the bill was reported from the Senate Committee on Armed Services on May 12, 2008, but the Senate did not take up consideration of the bill until September. One attempt was made to bring the bill up for consideration on July 31, 2008, but a motion for cloture lost 51-39.[4]


Same for all scorecards:

Scored vote

Scorecard: National Journal 2008 Senate Scorecard

Org. position: Nay

Description:

"Allow the Senate to proceed to the fiscal 2009 Defense authorization bill. July 31. (51-39; 60 votes required to invoke cloture. Reid voted no so that he could subsequently move to reconsider the vote.)"

(Original scorecard available at: http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/cs_20090228_4813.php)

When the Senate did proceed to the bill, it considered an amendment amendment by Sen. David Vitter to increase funding for missile defense. The amendment was defeated by a vote of 57-39.[5]


Same for all scorecards:

Scored vote

Scorecard: Americans for Democratic Action 2008 Senate Scorecard

Org. position: Nay

Description:

"Vitter (R-LA) amendment to authorize an additional $271 million for the Missile Defense Agency for programs to address and respond to near-term ballistic missile threats. The cost would be offset by unspecified cuts in other military programs"

(Original scorecard available at: http://www.adaction.org/pages/publications/voting-records.php)

Scored vote

Scorecard: National Journal 2008 Senate Scorecard

Org. position: Nay

Description:

"Boost funding for missile defense programs"

(Original scorecard available at: http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/cs_20090228_4813.php)

On September 16, 2009, the Senate voted to invoke cloture on the bill by a 61-32 margin.

Same for all scorecards:

Scored vote

Scorecard: National Journal 2008 Senate Scorecard

Org. position: Aye

Description:

"Limit debate on the fiscal 2009 Defense authorization bill."

(Original scorecard available at: http://www.nationaljournal.com/njmagazine/cs_20090228_4813.php)

The Senate passed S. 3001 on September 17, 2008 by a vote of 88-8.


Final passage into law

Because of objections from some Republicans in the Senate, who opposed earmarks in the bill, there was no conference committee to reconcile the House and Senate versions of the bill. Instead, members of both chambers negotiated on a final compromise bill.[1]

The compromise version of the bill passed the House, with the Senate's S. 3001 bill number, on September 24, 2008 by a vote of 392-39.



It then passed the Senate by unanimous consent on September 27, 2008. [1]

President Bush signed the bill into law on October 14, 2008. Bush issued a signing statement objecting to several provisions in the bill, including its ban on the use of the authorized funding "to exercise control of the oil resources of Iraq."[6]

Articles and resources

See also

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 John M. Donnelly, "Senate Clears Defense Authorization Bill", CQ Politics, September 27, 2008.
  2. OpenCongress' info page on H.R. 5658.
  3. THOMAS page on H.AMDT.1050.
  4. 4.0 4.1 OpenCongress' info page on H.R. 5658.
  5. THOMAS page on S.AMDT.5280.
  6. John M. Donnelly, President Asserts Constitutional Prerogative in Signing Defense Bill, CQ Politics, October 15, 2008.

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