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Congressman Dave Trott

Representing the 11th District of Michigan

Rep. Trott Blasts Obama Veto of Military Pay and Benefits

October 23, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC:  U.S. Representative Dave Trott (MI-11) spoke on the House floor in oppostition to President Barack Obama's veto of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)—bipartisan legislation that funds American’s armed forces and supports the nation’s military efforts around the globe.

“Despite the NDAA garnering widespread bipartisan support in both houses of Congress, President Obama has inexplicably threatened to veto it.  Our soldiers and their families deserve better than an administration that plays politics with the pay for our troops and puts national security on the line just to prove a political point,” said Rep. Trott on the House floor.

The NDAA legislation was passed in the House and Senate by strong bipartisan majorities and contains important military reforms and authorizes $612 billion in national defense spending. President Obama vetoed this important legislation on October 22, 2015.

“What I find the most shocking of all of this is that the President spent the last several months fighting to lift economic sanctions so that Iran’s terrorist army could receive billions in aid—and now he is planning to block funding for America’s military. That is unbelievable. Our soldiers deserve better than this.  Our nation deserves better than this,” added Rep. Trot

Learn More About the NDAA

NDAA - SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT (Courtesy of the House Armed Forces Committee)

Debunking The President's Defense Bill Veto

 

As the President addressed reporters ahead of his unprecedented Oval Office veto of the National Defense Authorization Act, he laid out a number of reasons for his veto.  While people are entitled to their own opinion, they are not entitled to their own facts.  Below, we set the record straight about this unprecedented and dangerous veto:
 
PRESIDENT OBAMA: The NDAA "keeps in place the sequester that is inadequate for us to properly fund our military in a stable, sustained way and allows all of our armed forces to plan properly…This bill instead resorts to gimmicks that does not allow the Pentagon to do what it needs to do

FACT: As an authorizing bill, the NDAA does not have the power to end sequester.   What it does do is authorize exactly the amount the President requested for the military- consistent with the Pentagon’s plans for the next fiscal year.  The President may dismiss the use of the Overseas Contingency Operations fund (OCO), but the President himself, requested $51 billion in OCO funding.  The NDAA identified and specifically authorized key programs within that fund to meet the needs of the military.
 
PRESIDENT OBAMA: The NDAA  “prevents a wide range of reforms that are necessary for us to get our military modernized and able to deal with the many threats that are presenting themselves in the 21st century.”

FACT: This is the most reform-centered defense bill in decades.  The NDAA implements fundamental reform of DOD’s broken and wasteful acquisition system, including twelve of the fourteen acquisition reforms the Department requested. The NDAA also modernizes military retirement, extending a portable 401(k)-style retirement plan to the 83% of troops who currently receive no retirement benefits.  
 
PRESIDENT OBAMA: “This legislation specifically impeded our ability to close Guantanamo in a way that I have repeatedly argued is counterproductive to our efforts to defeat terrorism around the world.”

FACT: The President has never submitted a plan for closing Guantanamo Bay.  Despite years of campaigning and veto threats, he has never proposed where detainees too dangerous to release might be held, or what he would do with new terrorist captures.  The NDAA requests that he submit such a plan.  The restrictions on closing GTMO and transferring GTMO detainees to the U.S. are exactly the same as restrictions signed into law by the President every year since 2010. 
 
Before vetoing the bill, President Obama said he would send the bill back to Congress, asking “Let’s do this right.”  Mr. President, the NDAA passed the House by a vote of 270-156 and the Senate passed it by 70-27.  A wide bipartisan majority in Congress knows that this bill already “does it right.”  On November 5th, the House will vote to override the veto and prove this fact.