Statement of Administration Policy: House Amendment to H.R. 1892 - Further Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018
(Rep. Frelinghuysen, R-NJ)
The Administration supports the House Amendment to the Senate Amendment to H.R. 1892, the Further Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018. This bill funds most Government programs at current levels through March 23, 2018, while incorporating the text of the House-passed fiscal year (FY) 2018 Department of Defense Appropriations Act, which provides the resources the military needs to keep the Nation safe. As the Administration has noted previously, the House-passed Department of Defense Appropriations Act is consistent with the President's pledge to undo the looming defense spending reductions that are harmful to America's national security and military readiness.
The House-passed Department of Defense Appropriations Act incorporated in the bill includes a total of $659 billion for the Department of Defense (DOD), including $584 billion in base spending and $75 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations. These amounts are consistent with a total funding level for DOD similar to that authorized by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018, which was signed into law by the President. It includes $1.2 billion requested by the Administration to support increased troop levels in Afghanistan, special operations forces capabilities, and other urgent needs.
The United States military's greatest asset is the men and women who volunteer to serve. This bill keeps faith with service members by providing a 2.4 percent military pay raise. It increases end strength across the military services for active duty, reserve, and National Guard personnel, and includes funding for training and maintenance to ensure that United States troops are properly equipped and ready to fight.
In addition to supporting the defense bill, the Administration supports language in the House Amendment to H.R. 1892 that provides for an extension of a variety of healthcare provisions, including Community Health Centers. The Administration is also appreciative that the bill includes language requested by the Administration to ensure continuity of operations for the 2020 Decennial Census Program and the Small Business Administration's Disaster Loans Program.
The Administration supports continuing discussions over a two-year budget agreement that ensures funding for national defense and other priorities. As those discussions continue, however, it is dangerous to hold defense funding for the current fiscal year hostage to arbitrary demands for lower-priority domestic programs.
If the Further Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018, were presented to the President in its current form, his advisors would recommend that he sign the bill into law.
Donald J. Trump, Statement of Administration Policy: House Amendment to H.R. 1892 - Further Extension of Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/348596