To provide for the common defense is one of the most important responsibilities in our Constitution. As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, I am reminded of this every day. There are many threats to our nation’s security and my work on the committee aims to help our Armed Services neutralize these threats.
After years of underfunding and budget sequestration, our military had become depleted and readiness was a major concern. I have worked with my colleagues on the committee to answer President Trump’s repeated calls to rebuild our depleted military and restore readiness. Congress is working to do so by passing, with my support, the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2019.
This bill authorized $717 billion towards national defense and key investments to military capabilities in order to better confront aggression and address threats around the world. These investments include funding for missile defense and nuclear deterrence, and a well-deserved 2.6 percent pay raise for our troops. Many of this year’s provisions will have a direct and positive impact on Louisiana such as:
- $12.25 million for Barksdale Air Force Base for the construction of a gate to a planned weapons storage facility, which will allow Barksdale to store advanced weapons and improve threat response times for the Global Strike Command.
- $39 million for the Naval Air Station in Belle Chasse to support ongoing enhancements so that the base’s F15 fighter jets can better intercept threats to the mainland.
With increased threats from near peer adversaries such as Russia and China, it is now more crucial than ever that we maintain a military that is ready to fight tonight. You can be sure that through committee work and oversight, I will hold our military leaders to standards that empower our troops and give them everything they need, on and off the battlefield.
House Armed Services Committee Subcommittee Assignments:
- Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities
- Seapower and Projection Forces
- Military Personnel
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WASHINGTON - Congressman Ralph Abraham, M.D., R-Alto, voted today for the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) conference committee report, the final step before the defense spending bill can go to the President. It passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support on a 359-54 vote.
The bill includes many wins for Louisiana military bases and families, including a pay raise for troops and funding for upgrades at Barksdale Air Force Base and the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base in Belle Chasse.