Tonight, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40) issued the following statement about her vote against the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA):
"I firmly believe in a strong national defense. At this time of growing threats and turmoil abroad, we must have a defense budget that meets the challenges of our time, provides long-term certainty to our military, and strengthens the security of American families.
"Unfortunately, I had to vote against the NDAA because instead of giving our military budget certainty, House Republicans offered a blatant, dangerous, and irresponsible budget gimmick.
"This NDAA moves $18 billion out of our nation's wartime operations account to pay for programs that the Pentagon did not even request. This reckless move creates a budget shortfall which will leave us with no war funds by the end of April 2017. Without those funds, we might not be able to pay and care for our men and women serving in the world's most dangerous places.
"In addition, by driving up spending for defense, this NDAA takes away much-needed resources from important priorities here at home. Education, roads, job training, health programs -- these are all investments that are shortchanged through this bill's accounting tricks.
"This bill also rolls back protections for the LGBT community against discrimination, despite bipartisan efforts to remove that language from this bill.
"Unfortunately, the majority has passed this flawed NDAA bill. I hope that the bill's dangerous funding gimmicks are removed once it moves through the legislative process and is reconciled with the Senate bill. I look forward to reviewing a future bill that provides our troops with the full support they deserve as they defend our nation."