Washington, D.C. – U.S. Representative Mike Rogers (R-AL), Lead Republican of the House Armed Services Committee, delivered the following remarks on the House floor in support of the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023.
Lead Republican Rogers' remarks as prepared for delivery:
I rise in strong support of H.R. 7776, the James Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act.
H.R. 7776 represents a strong bipartisan, bicameral compromise.
Providing the authorities and resources our warfighters need to defend our nation and defeat our adversaries is the greatest responsibility we have here in Congress.
We fulfill that responsibility with this NDAA.
We put our servicemembers first, providing a 4.6 percent pay raise and expanding benefits for military spouses and families.
To counteract the effects of record inflation on our military families, this bill –
- Increases housing allowances and lowers prices at commissaries to offset skyrocketing costs for rent and food;
- And it expands eligibility for low income military families to receive an additional allowance to cover basic needs.
This bill also ends the COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
The mandate has been needlessly forcing out thousands of talented and experienced servicemembers.
I’m pleased we reached an agreement to end it.
This bill is also focused on ensuring our warfighters are the best equipped and trained in the world.
We increase funding for readiness -
- Reversing cuts in military construction and housing projects;
- Expanding training availabilities for servicemembers; and
- Improving the safety of the ships, aircraft, combat vehicles, and facilities where our warfighters serve.
We also divest over $6 billion in legacy systems that do little to deter China and our other adversaries.
We reinvest those savings in emerging technologies, such as AI, quantum computing, hypersonic weapons, and autonomous systems.
These are the technologies we need to ensure our warfighters prevail on future battlefields.
The threats against us are rapidly evolving.
H.R. 7776 is laser focused on preparing our military to counter threats from China and our other adversaries.
It makes critical investments in new systems capable of surviving in contested environments.
It includes provisions that will further harden our supply chain and industrial base against infiltration from China.
And it reaffirms our support to allies in the region, especially Taiwan.
Finally, it strengthens our European alliance, as these democracies face grave threats from that crackpot in the Kremlin.
I am very proud we have, once again, come together in a bipartisan and bicameral manner to fulfill our Constitution duty and produce the fiscal year 2023 NDAA.
I urge all members to support it.