Greater Readiness, Enhanced Capabilities, More Support for Military Families
‘This week, we’ve already discussed the array of global challenges that face our nation at this critical moment. This NDAA will help equip our troops with the latest training and the best technology to confront those challenges and keep us safe.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding the president’s nominee for Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the Department of Education, Kenneth Marcus, and the John S. McCain 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA):
“Today, the Senate will consider the nomination of Kenneth Marcus to serve as the Department of Education’s Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights. His resume includes degrees from Williams College and California Berkley School of Law, and his career has spanned private practice and public service, with considerable experience in government. I look forward to voting to confirm Mr. Marcus later today.
“Then, the Senate will resume consideration of the John S. McCain 2019 National Defense Authorization Act. It’s the result of serious bipartisan work over the past several months. Our colleagues on the Armed Services Committee have engaged in candid discussions with our nation’s top military leaders.
“They’ve heard about the pressing needs of the men and women who serve in harm’s way: Greater readiness. Enhanced weapons capabilities in the air and on the seas. Simpler processes for acquisition. More support for military families. This week, we’ve already discussed the array of global challenges that face our nation at this critical moment. This NDAA will help equip our troops with the latest training and the best technology to confront those challenges and keep us safe.
“It’s also important to reflect on all that this legislation will do for our warfighters and their families here at home. It will increase base pay for servicemembers by 2.6 percent -- the largest annual raise in nearly a decade. It authorizes new resources for family housing construction, improved care for servicemembers’ children with severe disabilities, and programs to better manage opioid prescriptions in the military health system. And it will authorize continued operations at military posts across our nation that build up our nation’s security and form the backbone of local communities.
“The servicemembers who serve at Kentucky’s Army installations and in the Kentucky Air and Army National Guard are critical to our overall National Defense Strategy. I’m proud to represent them in here the Senate. Fort Campbell is home to the 101st Airborne Division and a number of special operations units. In recent years, many of these servicemembers have seen a near-constant cycle of deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. This NDAA ensures they are not forgotten.
“Fort Knox hosts the Army’s Human Resources Command and Recruiting Command, where the NDAA will help modernize officer personnel management. And this year’s legislation paves the way for new construction projects at both these facilities. In Madison County, the Blue Grass Army Depot is responsible for storing and demilitarizing conventional and legacy chemical weapons. It’s a top-of-the-line facility, integral to our national security. Passing this NDAA will help ensure it can continue safe and effective operations.
“It’s my privilege to represent the men and women of the Kentucky Air and Army National Guard, including the 123rd Airlift Wing. This legislation will reaffirm our commitment to these citizen soldiers and airmen, who’re always ready to respond to emergencies at home or threats from abroad. Kentucky is proud of our men and women in uniform. When I vote for this defense bill, I will cast my vote for them.”
Related Issues: NDAA, America's Military