Bacon Cites Partisan Floor Amendments in Vote Against NDAA

July 12, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Don Bacon (NE-02), a member of the House Armed Services Committee (HASC), made the following remarks after he voted no on H.R. 2500, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2020 following consideration by the House of Representatives.

“For decades the House of Representatives, under majority control of both parties, consistently formed a bipartisan agreement to pass the NDAA,” said Rep. Bacon. “Last month, I voted yes in committee to bring this bill forward, even though I disagreed with several of its provisions. I had faith that our tradition of bipartisanship on national security would improve the bill with sensible amendments. I am disappointed this did not happen.”

This week’s defense bill that was considered by the House included several requirements led by Rep. Bacon that would provide $500 million to assist the 55th Wing and Offutt AFB in recovering from devastating floods earlier this year. However, Rep. Bacon cited the large number of “poison pill” amendments made to the bill that caused him to withdraw support. These “poison pills” include provisions that would prevent our military from taking action to deter and respond to Iranian aggression, repeal the 2002 Authorization for the Use of Military Force without a replacement, and other measures that would deliver significant propaganda wins for Iran and Russia. There were also provisions that handcuffed the President from securing our border. Republican leaders also objected to the highly-restrictive amendment process that broke faith tradition and blocked debate on a large number of Republican amendments.    

“While it was not perfect, this was a good bill when we started the week,” said Rep. Bacon. “Unfortunately, the Democratic leadership chose to make the bill a messaging platform for the progressive left by adding controversial amendments that made it impossible for me to support in its current form. Fortunately, this bill will get better as it moves through the process and I look forward to voting for the final version that we eventually send to the President.”

H.R. 2500 passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 220-197 with no Republican support. The House and Senate will now form a conference committee to resolve differences between the two versions of the legislation.