McConnell on NDAA: “I Urge My Colleagues to Support This Legislation”
‘Congress has returned to work this week to enact the 60th annual National Defense Authorization Act into law. Yesterday, a bipartisan supermajority in the House voted to reapprove the conference report of this must-pass legislation. Today, the Senate will set up a final vote for tomorrow — Wednesday — for this chamber to follow suit. Soon this important legislation will be passed into law.’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks today on the Senate floor regarding NDAA and COVID-19 relief:
“Congress has returned to work this week to enact the 60th annual National Defense Authorization Act into law.
“Yesterday, a bipartisan supermajority in the House voted to reapprove the conference report of this must-pass legislation. Today, the Senate will set up a final vote for tomorrow — Wednesday — for this chamber to follow suit. Soon this important legislation will be passed into law.
“President Trump has rightly noted this year’s defense bill doesn’t contain every provision that we Republicans would have wanted. I’m confident our Democratic colleagues feel the same way.
“But that is the case every year.
“And yet, for 59 consecutive years and counting, Washington has put our differences aside, found common ground, and passed the annual defense bill.
“Not once in six decades has a Congress let its differences prevent it from completing this work for our national security and our men and women who wear the uniform.
“This year’s NDAA will continue our momentum in rebuilding and modernizing our armed forces.
“It will authorize the personnel, equipment, tools, and training we need to reinforce the National Defense Strategy and deter great-power rivals like China and Russia.
“It will cement our advantage on the seas, on land, in the air, in cyberspace, and in space.
“And the bill will help us continue to recruit, retain, and support the men and women who keep us safe. It provides a pay raise for the troops, improvements for military housing, childcare, and more.
“For the brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces, failure is not an option.
“So when it is our turn in Congress to have their backs, failure is not an option here either.
“I urge my colleagues to support this legislation one more time when we vote tomorrow.
“On Sunday, President Trump signed into law another historic, bipartisan rescue package. It will provide major support to American families through what we hope will be the home stretch of our fight with the coronavirus.
“Congressional Republicans, congressional Democrats, and President Trump’s senior team had all worked together to push hundreds of billions more dollars in urgent assistance to the people who need help most.
“This new law will set up a targeted second round of the Paycheck Protection Program to save jobs. It will renew and continue federal programs that have helped laid-off workers endure this crisis. It will send more cash to households. It will invest billions in vaccine distribution so the success of Operation Warp Speed kills this pandemic as fast as possible. And much more.
“This bipartisan compromise was our shot at getting help to working families on the urgent timeline that they need. Once again, I want to applaud President Trump for signing the bill and getting this much-needed assistance into the pipeline.
“During this process, the President highlighted three additional issues of national significance he would like to see Congress tackle together. First, as he’s explained, the President would like further direct financial support for American households.
“Second is the growing willingness on both sides of the aisle to at least reexamine the special legal protections afforded to technology companies under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, including the ways it benefits some of the most prosperous, most powerful “Big Tech” firms.
“And the third subject — since every American, regardless of their politics, should feel the integrity of our democracy is beyond reproach — is exploring further ways to protect the sanctity of Americans’ ballots, while continuing to respect the federal government’s limited role in standing behind the state and local elections authorities who run elections.
“Those are the three important subjects the President has linked together.
“This week, the Senate will begin a process to bring these three priorities into focus.”