On September 23rd, 2021, the House of Representatives passed the FY2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by a vote of 316-113. Among the priorities included in the bill are:
- Initiatives to counter China and Russia, including sanctions and new strategies for engagement with Southeast Asia and the Indo-Pacific region
- Requirements to investigate the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan
- Measures to constrain weapons and military aid and training to Saudi Arabia
- The implementation of the Global Health Security Agenda and appointment of a U.S. Coordinator for Global Health Security
- A requirement for women to register with the Selective Service for the military draft
Of note, an amendment to enact a 10 percent cut to the NDAA topline was defeated by a bipartisan vote of 86-332, and an amendment to reverse a $25 billion increase was defeated by 142-286. This means the House version will be more in line with the Senate version, which also increased its topline number from the Biden administration’s request of $715 billion.
Additionally, this week, the Senate Armed Services Committee filed the text of its version of the NDAA, which passed the Committee in July. Once the Senate considers amendments and passes its bill, the House and Senate will need to iron out the differences in “conference” before the final bill is voted on once more in each Chamber and sent to the President for his signature. While the Senate has not yet announced when it will take up its bill, it is expected sometime in October.