Washington, D.C. – House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) released the following statement on the release of the omnibus appropriations legislation:
“In our great nation, we love our freedoms, we love our families, we love our communities, and we love the opportunity we have to find prosperity for ourselves and our loved ones. Yet so much that we hold dear is at risk without one thing: our security. Without continued investment and a zealous pursuit of strong national security, what we hold dear is threatened.
“In recent years we did not invest enough in defense, and it is only by our good fortune and the superior skill of our men and women in uniform that we have remained as secure as we have. But our soldiers are stretched too thin and the challenges we face are only getting more difficult. This legislation significantly increases defense funding because there is nothing more important our government can do than to protect the American people”
Background on this legislation:
- Increases defense funding from $634 billion to $700 billion.
- This increase of $66 billion is the largest increase in defense spending in 15 years.
- Invests $22.4 billion to restore military barracks, hangars, roads, runways, and hospitals.
How this legislation improves our air capabilities:
- Invests $47.4 billion to get planes back into the air.
- This includes $11.5 billion to repair or upgrade old aircraft, $33.7 billion to replace aircraft, and $2.2 billion to recruit and train more airmen and mechanics.
- Currently, our Air Force is 2,000 pilots short, less than half of the Navy’s aircraft are in flying condition, and 80% of the Marine Corps aviation units lack the minimum number of ready basic aircraft
How this legislation improves our naval capabilities:
- Invests $37.3 billion to improve our naval readiness.
- This includes $12 billion to repair ships, $23.3 billion to add new ships to the fleet, and $2 billion to recruit and train sailors.
- Currently, some sailors have had to work over 100 hours per week to keep up with current operations. Naval ships and submarines also have to remain in port and are unable to complete missions because they have not had the proper maintenance funding.
How this legislation improves our ground capabilities:
- Invests $22.1 billion to prepare troops for deployment.
- This includes $2.7 billion to replace army equipment, $5.1 billion to recruit additional soldiers, and $14.3 billion to replace or upgrade equipment.
- Currently, only five of 58 Brigade Combat Teams are “ready to fight tonight” and the past eight years have seen a reduction of 120,000 soldiers in the Army, National Guard, and Reserves.