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Appropriations Bill Down for the Count?

Photo: aoc.gov
Photo: aoc.gov

In wake of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” fight yesterday, it appears defense spending will have to limp forward with the aid of a continuing resolution – an omnibus bill that basically sets spending at last year’s levels.

Colin Clark of DoD Buzz provides an excellent wrap up of the wrangling over the Defense Appropriations bill that never left the gate after the inclusion of several amendments – notably a repeal of DADT – and the subsequent filibuster by Republican members of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

While the bill didn’t pass, the committee’s views on various issues will “still resonate in the Pentagon,” Clark also writes. One of the strongest views deals with the fate of the Joint Strike Fighter, which the committee had considered cutting funding for, before ultimately reducing the number of planes allotted for in the bill, according to DoD Buzz.

From the committee’s report on the 2011 DoD appropriations: “The importance of the JSF program and the urgent need to replace aging fighters is the sole reason why the committee is only scaling back production and not recommending eliminating all funding for this program for fiscal year 2011.”

But the committee said there was an overarching need for DoD to get its fiscal house in order.

“The committee believes our defense leaders are well-intentioned, hard working, and professional, but have become complacent as record budgets have lessened the need for fiscal discipline,” it added.

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