Senate Pushes $841 Billion in New Spending for DoD

( – The Senate has pushed forward this year’s massive 3,100-page version of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), voting 87 to 13 in its favor. This year, the annual spending package authorizes over $886 billion in funding.

Democrats had previously sought to enshrine support for abortions and medical care for transgender troops in an earlier version of the NDAA passed by the House. However, these measures faced serious criticism and were eventually stripped out during negotiations.

The 2024 NDAA authorizes $841.4 billion for the Department of Defense (DoD) and $32.4 billion for national security programs within the Department of Energy (DoE). It also approves approximately $438 million in funding for other defense-related activities.

Key highlights include:

  • A 5.2% Pay Raise: The NDAA provides a 5.2% pay raise for the DoD civilian workforce and military servicemembers, the largest increase in decades​​.
  • Procurement Funding: There is significant funding for the procurement of armored vehicles, weapon systems, naval vessels, combat aircraft, and munitions​​​​.
  • Modernization of Military Technology and Capabilities: The bill earmarks funds for modernizing military technology and capabilities, including developments in hypersonic weapons, artificial intelligence (AI), quantum technologies, and biotechnologies​​.
  • Cybersecurity Strengthening: It includes funding to strengthen the Department of Defense’s cybersecurity strategies and capabilities, crucial for defense against threats, particularly from Russia and China​​.
  • Initiatives to Deter China and Russia: The NDAA invests in the Pacific Deterrence Initiative and establishes the Indo-Pacific Campaigning Initiative to counteract Chinese influence and activities in the region​​.
  • Nuclear Modernization: There is significant funding for nuclear modernization, including the Sentinel GBSD modernization, B-52 bomber upgrades, and replacement of aging helicopters​​.
  • Housing and Services for Servicemembers: The NDAA aims to improve access to housing and other services for troops, addressing their long-term needs​​.

The 2023 NDAA earmarks just one provision relating to financial support for Ukraine. The measure extends the previous Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative through 2026, granting $600 million between now and September 2025. Only half of that spending is available between now and the fiscal year ending in September 2024.

The most controversial provision of the 2024 NDAA is a four-month extension of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). This section of FISA allows the government to conduct surveillance and collect data for national security purposes.

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