(House of Representatives - December 20, 2012)

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[Pages H7384-H7395]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []

                            FISCAL YEAR 2013

  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, pursuant to House Resolution 840, I call up 
the conference report on the bill (H.R. 4310) to authorize 
appropriations for fiscal year 2013 for military activities of the 
Department of Defense, for military construction, and for defense 
activities of the Department of Energy, to prescribe military personnel 
strengths for such fiscal year, and for other purposes, and ask for its 
immediate consideration.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 840, the 
conference report is considered read.
  (For conference report and statement, see proceedings of the House of 
December 18, 2011, at page H6869.)
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from California (Mr. McKeon) 
and the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Smith) each will control 30 
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, since both the gentleman 
from California and the gentleman from Washington signed the conference 
report, it is clear they are supporters of the conference report. So I 
claim the 20 minutes that is allotted for someone in opposition when 
both majority and minority are in support.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Does the gentleman from California support 
the conference report?
  Mr. McKEON. I do.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Does the gentleman from Washington support 
the conference report?
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. I do, yes.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under clause 8(d)(2) of rule XXII, if the 
managers both support the conference report, then another Member may 

[[Page H7385]]

one-third of the time allotted for debate thereon.
  The Chair will recognize the gentleman from Massachusetts to control 
20 minutes in opposition to the conference report.
  The gentleman from California is recognized.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of the Fiscal Year 2013 National 
Defense Authorization Act Conference Report. As you know, the NDAA is 
the key instrument by which the Congress fulfills its primary 
constitutional responsibility to provide for the common defense.

                              {time}  1530

  This year will mark the 51st straight year we've successfully 
completed our work. We have long prided ourselves on our ability to 
reach across the aisle and build strong bipartisan legislation on 
behalf of our troops. This year is no exception.
  The bill authorizes $552.2 billion for national defense and $88.5 
billion for overseas contingency operations. In fact, though our troops 
are at war and a significant share of our equipment inventory is 
exceeding retirement age, this year's funding is a reduction in real 
terms from last year.
  Recognizing the magnitude of the cuts imposed upon the military over 
the past year is important. We must acknowledge the significant 
contribution defense has already made to deficit reduction. Half of the 
savings has come out of defense, even though the defense accounts for 
only 17 percent of the overall budget.
  Yet in a matter of days, sequestration will go into effect and, 
without further action, will do incredible injury to a military that 
took generations to build. It will take generations to fix. And the 
blow will not come from an enemy, but from our own inability to fulfill 
the basic obligations of governance. That is why I am pleased that 
today the House not only considers this critical piece of legislation, 
but will also vote--once more--to stop sequestration. It's imperative 
that both the President and the Senate show similar leadership and 
resolve sequestration before the end of this year.
  Despite these challenges, this conference agreement ensures that we 
can safeguard military readiness in a time of declining budgets and 
increased strains on our Armed Forces. We support missile defense, 
global strike, strategic and tactical airlift, and were able to 
preserve critical military capabilities. The bill supports pay and 
benefits for our military and their families, including a 1.7 percent 
pay raise, and rejects administration proposals to significantly 
accelerate increases in TRICARE pharmacy copays for our retirees.
  Unfortunately, there has been some inaccurate reporting regarding our 
detainee provisions. The protections included in the House-passed bill 
have been preserved in the conference agreement, and we worked closely 
during the conference negotiations with our House colleagues, who 
exercised leadership on this issue, to ensure that we retain their 
support. We did not include an amendment adopted 2 weeks ago on the 
Senate floor because we could not reach consensus on what the effect of 
the language would be.
  Rest assured, this conference report ensures that every American's 
constitutional rights, including the right to habeas corpus, remain 
unaffected, and every American can challenge the legality of their 
detention in Federal court. The ``great writ'' of habeas corpus is a 
citizen's most fundamental protection against unlawful deprivations of 
liberty. This reflects a consensus built after exhaustive debate over 
several years in both Chambers.
  The conference report covers many more critical issues, but I will 
close in the interest of time. Before I do, I would like to thank all 
our Members for their hard work, but in particular, my partner on the 
committee, Ranking Member Smith from Washington.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. I yield myself 3 minutes.
  I, too, rise in support of the conference report. I want to 
particularly thank Chairman McKeon, Senator Levin, and Senator McCain, 
who worked with us to get this product, as well as all the members of 
the committee and staff. We truly did work on this in a bipartisan 
fashion. I don't think there's a single one of us that's completely 
happy with everything that's in this piece of legislation, but that's 
the nature of compromise and working together to get something done.
  We need to pass a defense bill to support our troops and to get our 
troops the pay raise and the support that they need. So to get there, 
we have to work past our differences in order to come up with a product 
that we can vote for. We did that. It's proof that the legislative 
process can work.
  This is a critical piece of legislation. First and foremost, it 
prioritizes support for our troops and their families. We have to 
remember that we still have over 60,000 troops deployed in combat in 
Afghanistan. Making sure that they have the equipment, supplies, and 
support that they need to do the job that they're being asked to do is 
our number one priority.
  I'm pleased that we have a 1.7 percent pay raise included in this 
bill and pleased that we continue to support the effort in Afghanistan. 
I'm also pleased that we have language in this bill that makes it clear 
that it is time to end that mission in Afghanistan and bring our troops 
home as soon as we responsibly can. I believe that is also a critical 
priority going forward.
  There are other critical provisions of this bill. Once again, the 
Senate added language to ramp-up sanctions against Iran to keep the 
pressure on them to, hopefully, discourage them from developing a 
nuclear weapon. That is a critical piece of legislation.

  We also have in here reform to our satellite export regime. The 
cumbersome nature of that regime has significantly harmed the U.S. 
satellite industry. We've gone from having 65 percent of that market 
worldwide to less than 25 in the last 15 years. Getting back to a 
competitive place with that industry is critical to our national 
security. Those are companies that we're going to depend on to provide 
us the best equipment to best protect this Nation. That change is very 
  I am still disappointed in where we are at on Guantanamo Bay and 
detainee policy. This bill, again, though only for 1 year, not 
permanently, as they proposed in the Senate--I'm pleased that we were 
able to do that--tie the President's hands in how to deal with the 
people at Guantanamo Bay. We need to close Guantanamo and have the 
President have the freedom to deal with the inmates there in a way that 
is consistent with our values, our laws, and our Constitution.
  We also do not fix the detainee problem. The chairman is correct. We 
once again state, basically, that if you have rights, you have rights, 
but we still hold open the possibility of indefinite detention of 
people on U.S. soil. I think that is wrong. I think that is something 
that we should change.
  I will also disagree that habeas corpus is the highest form of 
protection for our rights. It is more like the last resort. It's the 
one thing that under no circumstances we can take away from you. The 
highest protection of individual rights is our Constitution and our 
article III courts that provide full due process and full rights to 
everybody facing criminal charges. So I hope we will fix that at some 
  Overall, this is a good bill that does one of our very important 
tasks here in Congress--to provide for the common defense--and I urge 
support of the measure.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. I intend to reserve most of the time for 
myself, but I have shared with the ranking member of the Armed Services 
Committee, who's done a very good job and had some commitments, and I'm 
yielding to some people as a proxy for him, but I will begin by 
yielding 1 minute to the gentleman from Iowa (Mr. Loebsack).
  Mr. LOEBSACK. I want to thank the gentleman from Massachusetts for 
  Mr. Speaker, while I very much appreciate all the work of Congressmen 
McKeon and Smith on this bill, I rise today because I strongly oppose 
allowing plans to significantly cut the Air National Guard embodied in 
this bill. I worked on a bipartisan basis to block these cuts because I 
strongly believe that, before an irreversible decision is made, we must 
have the strategic and

[[Page H7386]]

cost benefit justification. This 11th-hour proposal still does not 
provide that justification and should not move forward.
  The Iowa National Guard's 132nd Fighter Wing, for instance, is one of 
the most cost-effective and experienced units in the country. These men 
and women served our country and stayed honorably and they deserve 
better, yet this bill will allow their F-16s to be retired and 
positions cut without explanation for how it serves our national 
security or the taxpayers of America.
  I strongly oppose this decision, which is why I did not sign the 
conference report and, for the first time since I've come to this 
office, will oppose the National Defense Authorization Act this year.

                             General Leave

  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members may 
have 5 legislative days in which to revise an extend their remarks and 
insert extraneous material on the conference report to accompany H.R. 
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Yoder). Is there objection to the 
request of the gentleman from California?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. McKEON. I yield such time as he may consume to my friend and 
colleague, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land 
Forces, the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Bartlett).

                              {time}  1540

  Mr. BARTLETT. I rise in support of the conference report for the 
National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2013, the 51st 
consecutive conference report for this committee and the National 
Defense Authorization Act.
  I have had the honor of serving as the chairman of the Tactical Air 
and Land Forces Subcommittee of the Armed Services Committee. Under the 
full committee leadership of Chairman McKeon and Ranking Member Smith, 
the support of Silvestre Reyes, our subcommittee's ranking member, and 
a truly superb staff, ours is a really bipartisan effort.
  Our first priority and immediate requirement has continued to be to 
fully support our personnel serving overseas in Afghanistan and the 
many other countries where we have asked them to serve under the daily 
constant threat of their personal survival. We have worked diligently 
to support the armed services and provide additional resources to 
support the warfighter. This conference report properly reflects these 
immediate requirements.
  Consideration of this conference report comes during a continued 
period of critical challenges to our national security--from the 
rapidly growing national debt, cybersecurity threats, and across the 
threat spectrum to include security of chemical weapons stockpiles and 
proliferation of nuclear weapons.
  The Nation's fiscal circumstances and world events continue to 
challenge our government's will and capacity to constructively address 
the enormity of the challenges we face. The challenge is to develop an 
effective National Military Strategy that matches available resources 
and reflects the current and projected threat and fiscal environment. A 
fundamental objective appraisal of the national strategy is needed to 
enable the committee's full and balanced consideration of force 
structure and equipment investment plans and programs.
  I am concluding my service to Congress. It has been my great honor to 
serve our servicemembers and their families, the people of Maryland's 
Sixth District, this committee, and the House of Representatives for 20 
years now. It has also been my honor to put national security interests 
first in my service to the Armed Services Committee.
  I strongly urge all of my colleagues to support the National Defense 
Authorization Act conference report.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the 
gentleman from New Jersey (Mr. Andrews).
  (Mr. ANDREWS asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
  Mr. ANDREWS. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of this legislation and 
commend Mr. McKeon and Mr. Smith for their leadership in making it 
  Most importantly, this legislation takes care of the people most 
important to us--the men and women in uniform who will receive a pay 
raise under this legislation.
  Second, it maintains our competitive edge in technology as we look 
for new ways to defend our country and improve our situation around the 
  Third, I believe very strongly this bill affirms the Constitution of 
the United States; makes it clear that nothing in any statute, 
including this one, in any way subverts or undercuts the Fifth 
Amendment due process rights of any person under any circumstances. For 
these reasons, I would urge my friends both on the Republican and 
Democratic side to vote ``yes.''
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, continuing to yield 
according to the arrangements of the gentleman from Washington, the 
ranking member, I yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from New York (Mr. 
  Mr. NADLER. I thank the gentleman.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to this conference report. While 
the report is an improvement over the House bill, it still falls short 
of where we need to be on the question of detention without trial. 
Nonetheless, I do want to commend the gentleman from Washington for his 
conscientious work on this and other aspects of the legislation.
  As a Nation, no matter what adversity we have faced we have done so 
as Americans. We have united behind the values and freedoms that gave 
birth to this Nation and that have made it a moral force in the world. 
In the last decade, however, we have begun to let go of our freedoms 
bit by bit, with each new Executive order, each new court decision, and 
yes, each new act of Congress. We have begun giving away our rights to 
privacy, our right to our day in court when the government harms us, 
and with this legislation we are continuing down the path of destroying 
the right to be free from imprisonment without due process of law.
  The conference report states that:

       Nothing in the Authorization for Use of Military Force or 
     the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2012 
     shall be construed to deny the availability of the writ of 
     habeas corpus or to deny any constitutional rights in a court 
     ordained or established by or under Article III of the 
     Constitution to any person inside the United States who would 
     be entitled to the availability of such writ or to such 
     rights in the absence of such laws.

  This language simply continues the flawed policies established in the 
2011 defense authorization bill. First, it applies only to ``any person 
inside the United States.'' That is important, but most of the debate 
on indefinite detention without charge and on the lack of due process 
has to do with people held by our government outside our borders--
including, potentially, U.S. citizens.
  The language in this bill, combined with the prohibitions against 
moving these detainees into the United States, guarantees that we will 
continue holding people indefinitely without charge--contrary to our 
traditions of due process and civil rights.
  Second, this text continues the claimed authority of the United 
States Government to hold even U.S. persons captured on United States 
soil indefinitely and without charge. Some people may take comfort in 
the provision that states that those of us entitled to certain rights 
prior to the passage of the AUMF and of last year's defense 
authorization bill continue to have the same rights afterwards. But 
this bill does not say who among us are fortunate enough to have those 
rights, nor does it tell us what those rights might be. It does not 
specify how the executive branch is to determine which of us are 
entitled to these constitutional protections and which of us are not. 
And it does not provide us with recourse if the President gets it 
  Although I am urging a ``no'' vote on this conference report, I do 
want to acknowledge that, despite these very real problems, there are 
things in this bill that are important and that deserve Member support. 
For example, Senator Shaheen's amendment to allow servicemembers and 
their dependents to

[[Page H7387]]

obtain abortions in military hospitals in cases of rape and incest 
rights a terrible wrong. But we must take great care. Our liberties are 
too precious to be cast aside in times of peril and fear. We have the 
tools to deal with those who would attack us. We do not need to 
surrender our liberty.
  Because of this momentous challenge to the founding principles of the 
United States--that no person may be deprived of liberty without due 
process of law--this bill should be rejected.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to my friend and 
colleague, the vice chairman of the Armed Services Committee and the 
chairman of the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities, the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Thornberry).
  Mr. THORNBERRY. First, let me commend the chairman, the ranking 
member, and all the staff members for getting us here.
  Unfortunately, it is all too rare for the House to consider a bill 
with over 140 amendments on the floor here, have it passed, have a bill 
pass the Senate, go to a conference committee, and then have the 
conference report come back out to go to the President. It is all too 
rare, but if it's going to happen, it ought to happen on a bill dealing 
with the country's national security, and obviously that's what this 
bill does.
  Mr. Speaker, I think this is a good bill that makes significant 
progress in a number of areas. From the Emerging Threats and 
Capabilities Subcommittee, which I'm pleased to lead with Mr. Langevin, 
the distinguished gentleman from Rhode Island, we enhance oversight of 
cyber-operations in this bill, although we both acknowledge there is 
much more work to be done in the field of cyber. We meet some of the 
unfunded requirements of our special operations forces. We take steps 
to improve the management of our science and technology programs. And 
there are improvements to acquisition of information technology, which 
is an increasing challenge to the Pentagon because it does not fit 
within our normal acquisition methods.
  Finally, Mr. Chairman, I would just comment briefly. The gentleman 
from New York read the provision in this bill that deals with 
detention. It is absolutely true that this bill affirms yet again that 
the original Authorization for the Use of Military Force passed in 2001 
or last year's NDAA does not change the basic constitutional rights to 
which all persons in the United States are entitled. Now, it may be 
that there are some people who are unhappy with those basic 
constitutional rights; they think it should be more, or they think the 
Supreme Court has misinterpreted some of those rights. That is a 
different debate.

                              {time}  1550

  But there has been a fair amount of misinformation on this point, and 
I think for all Members who are concerned about this issue who get 
questioned about this issue, just read the language which says nothing 
changes those basic constitutional rights.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentlewoman from Guam (Ms. Bordallo).
  Ms. BORDALLO. Chairman McKeon, I thank you and, of course, Ranking 
Member Adam Smith.
  I rise today, Mr. Speaker, in support of the conference report for 
H.R. 4310. This defense bill conference report works to ensure that our 
men and women in uniform are well trained and equipped through the 
authorization of $176 billion in operation and maintenance funding, 
plus $62 billion for overseas operations, including Afghanistan.
  The conferees have restored 77 aircraft and 3,313 people to the Air 
Force's force structure, mostly in the Air National Guard and the Air 
Force Reserve, to ensure adequate resources are available to the States 
and the territories to respond to mobilizations, homeland defense and 
disaster-assistant missions. I am personally pleased that the conferees 
did not allow the retirement of Block 30 Global Hawks, which provide 
critical ISR capability.
  I am particularly pleased that the conference report authorizes the 
Secretary of Defense to establish a program to provide space-available 
transportation to Active Duty servicemembers and their dependents and 
Reserve component members and others at the Secretary's discretion.
  While I am disappointed that the conferees authorized percentage 
reductions in the DOD civilian workforce, I expect the Department to 
implement these reductions in compliance with the statutory 
requirements for a balanced workforce sized to meet mission 
requirements, workload, and to mitigate risks in operational readiness.
  Most importantly, Mr. Speaker, this conference report takes a major 
step toward loosening restrictions on the obligation and the 
expenditure of U.S. and Government of Japan funds to support the 
military buildup on Guam. I believe that this bill sends a strong 
message that the United States remains committed to providing resources 
to refocus on the Asia-Pacific region
  I'm also pleased that the conference report includes a requirement 
that flags from the District of Columbia and the U.S. territories be 
displayed at U.S. military installations around the world.
  I ask my colleagues to support the conference report.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, at the request of the 
chairman of the full committee, I would now yield 2 minutes to him. I 
believe he intends to conduct a colloquy.
  Mr. McKEON. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Kentucky for the 
purpose of a colloquy.
  Mr. WHITFIELD. Well, thank you, Chairman McKeon, and I certainly want 
to thank you and Mr. Smith and your staffs for the hard work to 
complete this 51st consecutive defense authorization bill. As you know, 
the Energy and Commerce Committee has an interest in a number of 
provisions included in the bill. One of the provisions is section 3113, 
which modifies section 4102 of the Atomic Energy Defense Act.
  My understanding of the Armed Services Committee's intention with 
regard to section 3113 is that, one, you want to reinvigorate a dormant 
statutory council by updating it and transforming it; and, two, you 
want to clean up the U.S. Code by eliminating obsolete language 
referring to the Assistant Secretary of Energy for Defense Programs.
  Is that your understanding, as well?
  Mr. McKEON. That's correct. This council will be an important 
mechanism for improving communication, and the rest of section 4102 is 
  Mr. WHITFIELD. It is also my understanding that it was not the intent 
in section 3113 to affect the Secretary of Energy's management, 
planning and oversight authority, or delegation authority, related to 
the National Nuclear Security Administration.
  Is that your understanding, as well?
  Mr. McKEON. That's correct. To further affirm that, I've sent a 
letter to the Secretary of Energy making clear the striking of this 
section in no way affects the Secretary's authorities.
  Mr. WHITFIELD. Well, Chairman McKeon, I want to thank you very much. 
The Energy and Commerce Committee was concerned about the elimination 
of portions of the underlying section, and it is my understanding that 
you will commit to working with the Energy and Commerce Committee next 
year to restore pertinent portions of section 4102 of the Atomic Energy 
Defense Act.
  Mr. McKEON. Yes, you have my commitment and my thanks for bringing 
this to our attention.
  Mr. WHITFIELD. Well, thank you. It's a joy working with you, and, 
once again, congratulations.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, at this time, I yield 2 minutes to my friend 
and colleague, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Readiness, the 
gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Forbes).
  Mr. FORBES. Mr. Speaker, first I want to thank the chairman, the 
ranking member and staff of the Armed Services Committee for the great 
job that they have done in bringing this bill to the floor.
  This bill takes several steps to ensure our military readiness, 
including the restoration of funding to retain at least three 
Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruisers that the Navy proposed to 
retire well before the end of their expected service life. The 
conference also added an additional 32 tactical airlift aircraft that 
are essential to meeting the Army's direct support airlift missions. 
These additional force structure changes are essential to ensuring our 
military meets mission requirements.
  The bill also refuses to authorize another round of BRAC, which I 

[[Page H7388]]

was founded on a flawed premise that assumes the administration's 
proposal for a reduced force structure is correct. I categorically 
refuse to accept a diminished Department of Defense and believe that 
additional force structure is necessary to support our combatant 
  While I support this bill, I'd be remiss if I did not express my 
concern associated with continued discussions on further reductions to 
the Department of Defense budget. While I believe the Federal 
Government, including the Department of Defense, needs to seek 
additional efficiencies, I reject the notion that additional cuts to 
Federal Government should be levied on the backs of our servicemen and 
-women who provide so much. We hold a special trust with these men and 
women, and we should oppose any proposal that seeks to diminish the 
promises provided to our valiant servicemembers.
  Mr. Speaker, I hope and encourage our Members to support this bill.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from Rhode Island, the ranking member on the Emerging Threats 
Subcommittee, Mr. Langevin.
  (Mr. LANGEVIN asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
  Mr. LANGEVIN. I want to thank Ranking Member Smith for yielding and 
also wish to thank Chairman McKeon, both of them, for their hard work 
on this bill and working so collaboratively on behalf of the men and 
women in uniform and for our national security. I also want to thank 
the committee staff and all of my colleagues on the committee for their 
work on this year's legislation. I'd especially like to give a special 
thanks to Chairman Thornberry, who has been a superb partner on the 
Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee, and I particularly want 
to thank him for his hard work and our collaborative work together on 
cybersecurity, which I care passionately about.
  While this legislation is not perfect in my eyes, it represents a 
compromise and common purpose that voters expect of us, as well as our 
continued commitment to one of our fundamental purposes as Members of 
Congress--providing for the common defense.
  Now, this bill makes important investments in both the people and the 
programs that make defense work. It ensures that we have a robust 
national security. I'm particularly proud to note that it includes key 
provisions I advocated for directing the procurement of an additional 
Virginia-class submarine in FY 14. These boats are critical to our 
national security, and the hardworking men and women at Electric Boat 
in my district are building them ahead of schedule and underbudget. 
This bill preserves the two-boat-per-year model that has made such 
efficiencies possible.
  I would also like to highlight the important cybersecurity provisions 
that enhance the oversight of Defense Department cyberoperations, 
establish criteria for DOD contractors to rapidly report cyberattacks 
and, most importantly, cyberpenetrations, especially when they've been 
successful, and obviously the work done here to grow our 
cyberworkforce. The highly skilled men and women who defend the United 
States' interests in cyberspace, in my opinion, are too few in number, 
and we have to reverse this trend, and we must attract, train and 
retain the very best.
  Likewise, I'm pleased that this legislation includes provisions I 
authored that ask the DOD to assess the state of next-generation 
directed energy technologies. DE technologies hold great promise. In 
the short and medium term, they will not be a replacement for kinetic 
defenses; but they can be an added benefit, whether it's on missile 
defense or leak defense.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. I yield the gentleman an additional 1 
  Mr. LANGEVIN. I thank the gentleman.
  These technologies will not be, again, a replacement for kinetic 
defenses; but given the threats that we face in terms of raid sizes 
from adversaries on both short-, medium-, and long-range missiles, 
directed energy technologies do add an added dimension of defense that 
can supplement kinetic defenses.
  With that, I want to thank all of my colleagues for their hard work 
on this bill. Again, I want to thank Chairman McKeon and Ranking Member 
Smith for working so well together, their hard work; and I urge all of 
my colleagues to support this important legislation.
  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, how much time remains on all 
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Massachusetts has 13 
minutes remaining, the gentleman from California has 10\1/2\ minutes 
remaining, and the gentleman from Washington has 12 minutes remaining.

                              {time}  1600

  Mr. FRANK of Massachusetts. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself my remaining 
  Mr. Speaker, I have some differences with particular provisions here, 
I would agree with the gentleman from New York, but that's not my major 
reason. That's not my reason at all for commandeering the time of this 
debate, and I apologize to those on the committee who worked so hard 
and who had an expectation to be able to talk about this specifically. 
I tried to accommodate that some, but here is my dilemma: it's partly 
the structure of this institution and of our rules and of our task.
  The committee does a very good job of operating within the given 
parameters of America's military engagement. They discharge very well 
their obligation to fund that level. What we don't have in our 
structure is a form in which to debate the most important question we 
face as a country: What level of worldwide military engagement should 
we be committed to pursuing? Because that level of military engagement 
dictates the funding.
  Members have said this is a good bill because it supports the men and 
women who we send into battle and into harm's way. Of course it does. 
It would be immoral to do anything less for them. The question is not 
whether having made a decision to be engaged on a worldwide basis we 
fund them adequately, but whether we are asking them to do too much. I 
would say my general principle in part is this.
  We have a superior military, wonderful men and women, very well-
equipped thanks to this House and this Senate and the administration. 
They do very well what a military can do. A military can stop bad 
things from happening.
  Where we make the mistake is of asking these wonderful people to do 
something that militaries are not good at: make good things happen, 
take on roles in societies, quite literally and metaphorically, foreign 
to us and deal with the deepest human problems of religious and 
cultural disagreements.
  I would be morally conflicted if I thought those kinds of 
interventions could be successful. I would like to alleviate the people 
in Afghanistan who suffer from some of these problems or in Iraq or 
elsewhere, but the point is we can't do that. The best trained and 
armed 30-year-old Americans can't resolve the problems that rack those 
societies. They can repel enemies, but they cannot create good 
  Beyond that, we are suffering, I believe, from cultural lag. Sixty-
seven years ago, at the end of World War II, America needed to be there 
for virtually every society in the world outside of the vicious 
Communism presided over by Joseph Stalin. The nations of Western and 
Central Europe had been weakened by World War II. They were vulnerable 
to Stalin.
  Russia had been weakened, too, but he was able to use the brutal 
force of his system to put whatever resources he had into a military 
that not only threatened, but ate up freedom in many European 
countries. And Harry Truman, to his credit, with the bipartisan support 
from Congress said, No, no further, and inserted American troops and 
American money to keep the weak nations of Western and Central Europe 
from being overrun by Stalin.
  Stalin, thank God, is dead, and the terrible system over which he 
presided has crumbled. That does not mean that I believe Russia is a 
wonderful place to live. I continue to be grateful to my grandparents 
for getting the heck out of there, but it's not a threat to the United 
States' competence.
  On the other hand, the European nations that we went in there to 
protect are now strong and prosperous. We no longer have weak nations 
in Central

[[Page H7389]]

and Western Europe, and there is no longer a belligerent threat to 
them. One thing that hasn't changed is we're still there, with tens of 
billions of dollars of American money protecting the strong nations 
against a nonexisting threat.

  Japan was disarmed 67 years ago because of understandable fears. 
Japan, today, is a very different country, and an American policy that 
insists on subsidizing the defense of Japan because of what happened 67 
years ago is a disservice to the American people.
  I want us to be the strongest nation in the world, Mr. Speaker. Some 
of my liberal friends say that sounds xenophobic. It's very simple. 
Somebody's going to be the strongest nation in the world by the process 
of elimination. I look at the candidates, and I'm for us.
  I will be honest with you, if Denmark had the possibility of being 
the strongest nation in the world, I would be pretty relaxed about it, 
but they can't handle it. It's either going to be us or some country 
I'm not that crazy about. But we can be the strongest nation in the 
world much less expensively than we are.
  Let me read from some who are critical because this President hasn't 
gone far enough. And a couple of my colleagues have praised the bill 
for putting more weapons into play than the Pentagon wants for 
objecting to their retirement of these weapons; in other words, it's 
more money than the Pentagon wanted in some cases. Here's the viewpoint 
that I think is being expressed here.
  In an article in The Wall Street Journal on November 7, the day after 
the election--hope springs eternal for some people--Mr. Jack David and 
Michael Dunn wrote an op-ed piece. Mr. David was the Deputy Assistant 
Secretary of Defense in the Bush administration; Mr. Dunn had the 
former presidency over the Air Force Association. Here's what they say 
in support of more aircraft, part of which the committee appeared to be 
responding to. It wasn't directly, but it was in consonance with it. 
They complain that the Air Force has been a victim of its success. They 

       Ironically, the inattention and repeated cuts that have 
     taken a toll on this branch of the military haven't received 
     the public attention they deserve because the Air Force has 
     been so successful. No U.S. soldier has been killed by enemy 
     airpower since 1953. For six decades, the Air Force has been 
     able to deny operational airspace to adversaries, so U.S. 
     ground forces have operated with little fear of enemy 
     aircraft attacking their positions.

  This is in The Wall Street Journal, written by a former Bush 
Assistant Secretary of Defense and the head of the Air Force 
  But they say it's not enough to have had no American killed since 
1953--for which I'm very pleased--and have totally dominated every 
battlefield for six decades. Here's what we have to do, they say:

       But the U.S. relies on the Air Force to do much more than 
     that--including to hold at risk any actual or potential enemy 
     target, anywhere in the world.

  At a time when I'm being asked--I'm not going to do it--to cut back 
on the cost of living for Social Security, when we don't have adequate 
funds for health research, when we have had cities lay off police and 
fire--you're worried about the safety of Americans? Let's give the 
cities the resources not to lay off police and fire--I don't want to 
vote money to hold at risk any actual or potential enemy target 
anywhere in the world.
  By the way, we have to do this ourselves, because the next thing we 
have to do is ``protect the ground forces of friends and allies.'' Why 
can't some of our allies protect their own ground forces? Is there 
something about Germany and Italy and France and Spain and England and 
Japan that renders them genetically incapable of having their own air 
forces? I know we were told we have to stay in Iraq and Afghanistan 
because they don't have their own air force, but neither do the people 
attacking them.
  The next thing we are told is ``to protect the U.S. from a nuclear 
attack.'' I agree. We have a nuclear capacity that far exceeds any 
potential combination of enemies. We had, during the height of the Cold 
War, the triad. We could destroy the Soviet Union in a thermonuclear 
war, and they had the capacity to go after us by missiles, submarines, 
or strategic air command.
  I have a proposal that sounds like I'm kidding. Sometimes I'm 
kidding; this time I'm not. Can we not go to the Pentagon and say, You 
know what? Now that there is no Soviet Union, there is a much weaker 
Russia--and I agree, Russia won a war against Georgia. They won a war 
against the country of Georgia. I think the way that we have armed the 
State of Georgia, I'm not sure what the outcome would be if that was 
the war. But Russia does not have anything like the capacity it had at 
the height of the Cold War. We still have the capacity to destroy them. 
Can we not say to the Pentagon, You know those three ways you have for 
destroying the Soviet Union? Please pick two. Would we not be very 
secure against a Soviet nuclear attack if we had two instead of the 
three and can save billions of dollars?
  Now we're told, also, we must ``provide navigation through its global 
positioning systems.'' We have to protect, I'm told, the trade routes 
everywhere in the world, we have to protect them against China.
  Mitt Romney got something right in his debate with the President when 
he said he's not afraid of toughening sanctions against China for 
currency manipulation because, he says, people say they're going to cut 
off their trade.
  They make an enormous amount of money out of that trade. Why would 
they cut it off? Agreed. Why would the Chinese shut down the navigation 
route over which they make an enormous amount of money? It's like 
Dominos decided to tear up the street so they couldn't deliver the 
pizza. We are spending money on the Navy that protects every shipping 
lane everywhere in the world as if we were the only ones who had that 

                              {time}  1610

  Now let me give this one--surprising from conservatives--which is to 
airlift humanitarian aid anywhere in the world. I wish we were doing 
more in Haiti, and I wish we were doing more to stop children from 
dying of illness in Africa--but we have to give humanitarian aid 
anywhere in the world to our wealthy allies and others? Frankly, I wish 
we were better able to deliver humanitarian aid to New Jersey than to 
rich countries elsewhere. I don't say that as an isolationist. I wish 
we were doing more in some ways. I regret the attack on the 
International Monetary Fund--that I hear from my Republican 
colleagues--which would destabilize Europe. I would like to increase 
economic aid. I would like to do more to fight AIDS and malaria. I 
would like to do it in a more effective way.
  Now, I'm told, in part, well, it's bad for jobs if you cut the 
military. That is a head-swiveling degree of inconsistency. I am told 
by many of my Republican colleagues, when the Federal Government 
provides aid to cities to keep firefighters on the job, when it builds 
roads, when it builds housing for the elderly, that somehow that's just 
something called ``stimulus,'' which doesn't add to the economy; but 
apparently, when we spend money to maintain bases in Germany or in 
Okinawa, when we build weapons that aren't needed, and even more when 
we maintain a nuclear arsenal we don't need, that somehow, magically, 
that creates jobs. It's as if Keynes were only right if he were armed. 
It's military Keynesianism.
  The government does not help with the economy. Of the people who have 
said no government stimulation of the economy, how can they, Mr. 
Speaker, then turn around and say, We've got to do this for jobs? By 
the way, I think there is a government role in stimulating the economy. 
Defense tends to be, on the whole, the least efficient way to do it. 
The largest percentage of it is spent overseas. If we close down bases 
in NATO, it's going to hurt some people--but not here--and people who 
can afford it. Now I'm told, Well, that's mean because you're allies, 
and you're supposed to have troops where your allies are. Then how come 
I never saw any Belgian troops at the border in the United States? It's 
a one-way street.
  Now, let me say of the President--and he has done a very good job, 
and I appreciate his withdrawal from Iraq and his resisting of some of 
the pressure, but he should go further. I did note--and the country is 
ready for this--that during that memorable moment when Clint Eastwood 
lost the debate to a chair that one of the things

[[Page H7390]]

he said that got enormous applause at the Republican convention was, 
Let's get out of Afghanistan right away. The American people understand 
we have long since stopped doing a lot of good there. That's not 
because there is any lack of bravery or skill on the part of those 
wonderful young people who are there. It's not their fault that we have 
put them in a place they no longer ought still to be. We ought to 
withdraw them.
  I have one difference with the President, let me say in closing. On 
this, he says--however he's the President, and when you're the 
President, they all tell you these things--that America is the 
indispensable Nation. We were in 1945. We should not consider ourselves 
to be the indispensable Nation today. We are not indispensable to the 
defense of Germany and Italy and England, and we act as if we are. 
We're not indispensable in keeping open sea lanes for other countries. 
Frankly, Mr. Speaker, the time has come for us to urge wealthy nations 
that face no significant threat to dispense with us from the standpoint 
of our military activity.
  So that's my objection to this bill. It does a reasonable job--with 
some disagreements some of us would have--of funding the current level 
of commitment, but the current level of commitment far exceeds any 
rational definition of ``national security.'' It's zero sum. It comes 
at the expense of every other program we try to maintain to promote the 
quality of life in the United States. I hope the bill is defeated.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. LaTourette). The gentleman's time has 
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to my friend and 
colleague, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Military Personnel, the 
gentleman from South Carolina (Mr. Wilson), a member of the conference 
  Mr. WILSON of South Carolina. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, for your 
successful leadership of peace through strength.
  The conference report for the National Defense Authorization Act 
provides our warfighters, veterans, and military families the care and 
support they deserve and have earned. Specifically, the conference 
report will authorize a true pay increase of 1.7 percent, limit end-
strength reductions for the active Army and Marine Corps, provide 
significant new regulations and procedures for combating sexual 
assault, extend access to family housing and commissary-exchange 
benefits for troops who are involuntarily separated, and control the 
rate of co-pay increases for TRICARE.
  From the beginning, the military personnel provisions have resulted 
from a bipartisan process. I want to thank subcommittee ranking member, 
Congresswoman Susan Davis, for her contributions. Additionally, I 
appreciate the dedication of the staff: John Chapla, Debra Wada, 
Jeanette James, Craig Greene, and Jim Weiss, along with military 
legislative assistant Chad Sydnor and military Fellow, Marine Master 
Gunnery Sergeant Michelle King. I also want to note the contributions 
of Michael Higgins, who is a retiring subcommittee staffer and true 
professional who has devoted 23 years of service to the committee after 
severing 20 years in the Air Force. Mike has made a positive difference 
on behalf of servicemembers, military families, and veterans.
  I urge my colleagues to support the conference report.
  Mr. Speaker, the following is my statement in its entirety: Thank you 
Mr. Chairman for your successful leadership for peace through strength. 
The Conference Report for the National Defense Authorization Act 
provides our war fighters, veterans and military families the care and 
support they deserve and have earned; additionally ensuring that 
proposed drawdown plans do not cut to the heart of the Army and Marine 
Corps. Specifically, the conference report will:
  Authorize a troop pay increase of 1.7% and extend bonuses and special 
pay for our service members; limit end strength reductions for the 
active Army and Marine Corps; provide significant new regulations and 
procedures for combating and prosecuting sexual assault within the 
military; extend access to family housing for six months and Commissary 
and Exchange benefits for two years for troops who are involuntarily 
separated; and control the rate of co-pay increases for the Tricare, 
pharmacy benefit.
  From the beginning, the military personnel provisions in the Fiscal 
Year 2013 Defense Authorization Act have resulted from a bipartisan 
process. I want to thank the subcommittee Ranking Member, Congresswoman 
Susan Davis for her contributions and support in this process.
  Additionally, I appreciate the dedication of the Subcommittee staff: 
John Chapla, Debra Walda, Jeanette James, Craig Greene, and Jim Weiss 
along with Military Legislative Assistant Chad Sydnor and Military 
Fellow, Marine Master Gunnery Sergeant Michelle King.
  I also want to note the contributions of Michael Higgins, a retiring 
subcommittee staffer and true professional, who has devoted 23 years of 
service to the committee, after serving 20 years in the Air Force. Mike 
will be retiring soon and this conference report will be his last one. 
Mike has made a positive difference on behalf of service members, 
military families and veterans.
  I urge my colleagues to support the conference report on the Fiscal 
Year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 3 minutes to the 
distinguished minority whip, the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Hoyer).
  (Mr. HOYER asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
  Mr. HOYER. I thank my friend Mr. Smith, the ranking member, and I 
thank Mr. McKeon for the work that they have done; and I want to thank 
my friend Barney Frank for the thoughtful perspective he brings to the 
consideration of this bill.
  As we struggle to get America on a fiscally sustainable path, none of 
us in this body or in this country ought to believe that we can save 
harmless defense from oversight and savings where they can be affected 
while maintaining the security of our country. It would simply be 
irrational to believe that we cannot have a contribution from the 
defense sector of our budgets when we are struggling to do what Admiral 
Mullen says is the number one security issue that we have, and that is 
the fiscal stability of our country and the elimination of our debt. So 
I thank Mr. Frank for his contribution.
  Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the conference report, a bipartisan 
measure to enhance our national security and provide for our troops. 
Ranking Member Smith and the chairman, Mr. McKeon, and our Democrats on 
the committee have worked closely with their Republican counterparts 
for a long time to craft a bill that will strengthen our defense 
against emerging threats while ensuring that our troops in Afghanistan 
and around the world have the resources they need to get the job done 
that we have given them. This bill includes a number of key provisions, 
and Ranking Member Smith and his counterparts deserve great credit for 
ensuring their inclusion:
  For one, the bill expands the military's toolkit when it comes to 
preventing sexual assault--a profoundly unsettling problem in the 
military. Importantly, from my perspective, this conference report 
preserves the Shaheen language added in the Senate, extending health 
coverage for female servicemembers, on whom we are so dependent in our 
Armed Forces, or their dependents who need access to emergency services 
following an incident of rape or incest;
  In recognizing the importance of strong military ties with Israel, 
this bill authorizes nearly $480 million for missile defense 
cooperation with our longtime and critical ally. That includes $211 
million for the Iron Dome system, which was critically successful in 
defending Israeli citizens against Hamas rockets from Gaza just a few 
weeks ago;
  We also remain committed to efforts that compel Iran to abandon its 
nuclear weapons program which threatens the United States and our 
allies. To that end, this bill further tightens sanctions on Iran. I 
strongly support those sanctions;
  I was also pleased to see the conference report does not include 
dangerous House-passed language that would have prevented the 
administration from using all the judicial tools available to bring 
terrorists to justice.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. LaTourette). The time of the gentleman 
has expired.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. I yield the gentleman an additional minute.
  Mr. HOYER. I thank the gentleman.
  Like any compromise, this is not a perfect bill. We don't pass 
perfect bills, but it's a good bill that is worthy of support.

[[Page H7391]]

  I would be remiss if I did not note my concern with section 533--
unnecessary and, in my opinion, dangerously vague language that 
represents another backdoor attack on the highly successful repeal of 
the discriminatory Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy and the open service of 
courageous gay and lesbian servicemembers.
  As Barry Goldwater so aptly said, what I'm concerned about is not 
whether they're straight, but whether they can shoot straight. We ought 
to focus on competency and patriotism, not anything else.
  On balance, this is critical national security legislation, and I 
urge my colleagues to join me in supporting it. Our troops continue to 
do an outstanding job. Many of them are at the point of the spear in 
harm's way. We owe them our gratitude and our continuing support.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to my friend and 
colleague, the chairman of the Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, a 
member of the conference committee, the gentleman from Ohio (Mr. 
  Mr. TURNER of Ohio. Thank you, Chairman McKeon.
  Mr. Speaker, I urge my colleagues to support the conference report 
for the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.
  This bill sets important national security priorities, such as the 
block-buy procurement of two space-based infrared system satellites. It 
also establishes important oversight mechanisms for the acquisition 
timelines of satellite, ground, and user-terminal segments of space 
programs, which have been lacking in recent years.
  The conference report urges and ensures greater efficiency and 
effectiveness at the National Nuclear Security Administration by 
limiting the bureaucracy and paper-pushing, and begins the process of 
important reforms of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board.

                              {time}  1620

  It requires the administration to make good on its nuclear 
infrastructure modernization promises, including completing the Los 
Alamos Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement Nuclear Facility 
by 2026. The United States must not be the only nuclear weapons state 
without a meaningful production capability.
  It also imposes important oversight on unilateral nuclear reductions, 
including requiring a new nuclear posture review.
  Lastly, it supports a robust national missile defense, including 
requiring the Department of Defense to begin the work of fielding an 
additional missile defense site in the United States, likely on the 
east coast. As I have told my colleagues for some time, every Member of 
Congress is just three classified briefings away from understanding how 
important this site is.
  Our Israeli allies have proven how important an effective, layered 
missile defense is, and I'm grateful that the conference report 
includes the $211 million recommended in the Strategic Forces mark this 
past April for Iron Dome, and it supports our other cooperative missile 
defense programs with Israel.
  I want to thank Chairman McKeon for his leadership that has resulted 
in the 51st consecutive National Defense Authorization Act, and we look 
forward to beginning work on the 52nd.
  I also want to thank Tim Morrison, lead staff of the Strategic Forces 
Subcommittee, for his expertise and his leadership in ensuring that our 
Strategic Forces Subcommittee and this mark include important 
initiatives to protect our national security.
  Lastly, I, too, want to join many who are congratulating Mr. Frank on 
the end of his congressional career, but I do want to note his 
rhetorical question of why do we have troops in Europe defending Europe 
against the Soviet Union that no longer exists. Even though it is a 
statement that many Members state here on the House floor, it is 
absolutely incorrect. There is not one servicemember that we have there 
that's doing anything but essential work to our national security.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentlelady from California (Mrs. Davis), ranking member on the Military 
Personnel Subcommittee.
  Mrs. DAVIS of California. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 
4310, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.
  As the ranking member of the Military Personnel Subcommittee, I'm 
very pleased that this bill includes a number of provisions that 
continue our commitment to our men and women in uniform and their 
dedicated families. I want to thank my chairman, Joe Wilson, for his 
support and assistance, and recognize the chairman of the House Armed 
Services Committee, Buck McKeon, and Adam Smith, the ranking member, 
for their leadership.
  Here are a few highlights from the conference report.
  There will be a 1.7 percent pay raise, a critically important 
recognition of what our servicemembers do for us, particularly during 
economically challenging times.
  It provides separation authorities as the services reduce their end 
strength. These authorities will be crucial to the Department's ability 
to execute its drawdown in a responsible manner that ensures that long-
serving members and their families are compensated appropriately.
  We continue our focus on mental health by codifying the Suicide 
Prevention and Community Health and Response Program for the National 
Guard and Reserves. Additionally, the bill requires the Secretary of 
Defense to providing training on suicide prevention, resilience, and 
community health, and it expands the scope of providers who may conduct 
pre-administrative separation medical examinations for post-traumatic 
stress disorder to include licensed clinical social workers and 
psychiatric advanced practice registered nurses.
  We all know sexual assault remains a focus for the Congress, and 
there are a number of provisions that help to address the problem, 
including prohibiting the granting of waivers for commissioning or 
enlistment of an individual who has been convicted of sexual offenses 
under Federal or State law, and it requires the services to establish 
special victim capabilities for investigation, prosecution, and victim 
support in connection with child abuse, serious domestic violence, or 
sexual offenses under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
  The bill authorizes the Defense Department to establish transition 
assistance programs for members of the Guard and Reserve components who 
serve on active duty for more than 180 days, a program that previously 
did not exist.
  And the bill provides female servicemembers and dependents with the 
same reproductive rights in cases of rape and incest that other women 
in Federal health plans can already exercise.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. LaTourette). The time of the gentlewoman 
has expired.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. I yield the gentlewoman an additional 30 
  Mrs. DAVIS of California. I want to note, Mr. Speaker, that the bill 
continues to recognize the sacrifices of those who serve our Nation in 
uniform. During a time when many young Americans of all stripes--male 
and female, gay and straight, from every ethnic background 
conceivable--are forward deployed and all around the globe, we in the 
Congress have an obligation to ensure that these men and women are 
provided for. We must stand up to this important obligation. I urge all 
of my colleagues to support the bill.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to my friend and 
colleague, the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Wittman), the chairman of 
the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations and a member of the 
conference committee.
  Mr. WITTMAN. Mr. Speaker, I would like to start by thanking our 
chairman, Mr. McKeon, and ranking member Mr. Smith for their 
leadership, and to thank all the staff for their great work. You know, 
in this city where partisan strife tends to reign supreme, it is truly 
refreshing to see folks able to work across the aisle and focus on a 
common goal, which is ensuring that the men and women of our all-
volunteer force are provided with the highest-caliber resources, 
training, and authorities as they step into harm's way to complete 
their missions.
  Our Nation is the greatest nation the world has ever known, precisely 
because our brave servicemen and -women make up the finest military the 
world has ever known.

[[Page H7392]]

  But our military is certainly facing many difficult challenges, both 
here at home, where the Pentagon has endured 50 percent of the Nation's 
deficit reduction despite the fact it only comprises 20 percent of the 
budget, and also abroad, where our troops continue to serve bravely in 
Afghanistan, and where geopolitical focus is beginning to shift to the 
Asia Pacific.
  These challenges have certainly been at the heart of efforts by the 
Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee throughout the past year. And 
over the past 6 months, the O&I Subcommittee convened a number of 
hearings and briefings on the training and development of the Afghan 
National Security Forces. I consider this issue one of our national 
security imperatives, and we must continue to monitor this effort in 
the months to come.
  Since June of 2011, the subcommittee also conducted an extended study 
of the Navy's 30-year shipbuilding program in order to better 
understand the effectiveness of this plan and its impact on the defense 
industrial base.
  These initiatives, and others like them, have been aimed at 
maximizing the successes of our military, increasing our capabilities 
for future successes, and ensuring efficient and effective use of 
resources and funding.
  At the heart of all of this, we must ensure that the looming defense 
cuts under sequestration are addressed. Our national security depends 
on us getting this right.
  This conference report today echoes these goals of providing for our 
military, and I'd like to thank the Members and staff for their 
dedication to our men and women in uniform.
  Most importantly, Mr. Speaker, I'd like to thank the soldiers, 
sailors, marines, airmen, and Coast Guardsmen who selflessly serve this 
Nation on a daily basis. Without their service, we would not be the 
great Nation we are today, and their example inspires me on a daily 
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentlelady from California (Ms. Loretta Sanchez), the ranking member on 
the Strategic Forces Subcommittee.
  Ms. LORETTA SANCHEZ of California. I thank the ranking member, Mr. 
  As the ranking member on the Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, I'm 
pleased with many of the provisions here in this conference report.
  In the fiscal year 2013 NDAA, we successfully included strong support 
for the national security space programs, our nuclear deterrent, and 
our nuclear nonproliferation efforts, including an increase for the 
global threat reduction initiative and steps for a renewed ban on 
exports of highly enriched uranium.
  I'm also pleased that the bill authorized funding for nuclear 
cleanup, and homeland and regional missile defense, including strong 
support for our U.S.-Israeli cooperation.
  That section of the bill also contains important provisions to ensure 
our capabilities are tailored to our national security requirements, 
and that they're cost-effective. How do we do that? As a first step, 
we're going to have detailed studies and independent reviews of 
maintaining our nuclear weapons and analyses on plutonium pit reuse and 
on current requirements for plutonium pit production.
  The bill also does not contain some very controversial issues we had 
in the House version, in particular, that would have weakened our 
health, safety, and security across the nuclear weapons complex and 
really undermined what I believe is our Federal oversight role. These 
steps will help us to sustain the deterrent force we need to meet 21st 
century challenges without overspending or compromising the safety of 
our workers or the public.
  There is some concern still: a $6 billion plutonium facility remains 
part of our immediate plans even though the Department of Defense, the 
U.S. Strategic Command, the National Nuclear Security Administration, 
and the National Laboratories, they all agree we don't need this 
facility for at least another 5 years, and they prefer more cost-
effective ways of doing this.

                              {time}  1630

  But, unfortunately, this was continued in this bill, and many other 
provisions. Thank you again.
  Lastly, I want to thank all of the staff for having helped us. To Mr. 
McKeon, and also to my ranking member, thank you so much.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the gentlewoman from 
Missouri (Mrs. Hartzler), my friend and colleague, a member of the 
Armed Services Committee.
  Mrs. HARTZLER. Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the conference 
report for H.R. 4310, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal 
Year 2013. I want to thank Chairman McKeon and Ranking Member Smith and 
all the colleagues of the conference committee for working together in 
a bipartisan fashion to bring this important bill to the floor for the 
51st consecutive year.
  The legislation we have brought here to the floor supports America's 
defense capabilities to better protect our homeland and support our 
troops. It is a good bill that will provide them with the tools and 
funding they need as they protect our freedoms and our liberties. There 
is no higher priority than advocating on their behalf, and they deserve 
nothing less than our best.
  There's good news for our military personnel. The bill authorizes a 
troop pay increase of 1.7 percent and extended bonuses and special pay 
for our men and women in uniform. Personally, I'm proud to see 
important military construction projects funded at Fort Leonard Wood. 
In addition, the bill continues support for the family of long-range 
strike bomber programs, including the B-2, whose home is Whiteman Air 
Force Base.
  Mr. Speaker, I'm proud to vote for this legislation and continue to 
pray for our troops and thank them for their service and their 
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Chairman, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from North Carolina (Mr. McIntyre), the ranking member on the 
Seapower Subcommittee.
  Mr. McINTYRE. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of the National 
Defense Authorization Conference Report. I appreciate the hard work of 
Chairman McKeon and Ranking Member Smith and that of my counterpart, 
Chairman Akin, on the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, on 
which I serve as ranking member.
  Among other important measures, this report provides a 1.7 percent 
pay raise, well deserved for our military servicemembers. It authorizes 
nearly $11 billion, which is almost $160 million more than the 
President's budget originally requested for our U.S. Special Operations 
Command, which has been a key component of the war against violent 
  And I can tell you, as the cochairman and cofounder of the Special 
Operations Forces Caucus, and one who represents Fort Bragg, home of 
the U.S. Army Special Operations Command and Joint Special Operations 
Command, and who has constituents who serve at the Marine Special 
Operations Command at Camp Lejeune, I am extremely pleased to see this 
investment in our Special Operations Forces warriors who are often on 
the front lines during global conflicts.
  Also, as ranking member of the Seapower Subcommittee, I'm pleased 
that the conference report makes real investments in our Nation's sea 
power by authorizing 10 new ships, a multi-year procurement authority 
for 10 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, and a multi-year procurement 
authority for 10 Virginia-class submarines, as well as the authority to 
fund them incrementally.
  The incremental funding gives the Navy greater flexibility in funding 
the new submarines and will take advantage of the savings generated 
from the Virginia-class attack submarines that continue to come in 
  Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleagues for their hard work on this 
conference report. We stand up for America's defense and for those that 
serve our country, and I look forward to its passage on the House floor 
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from 
Texas (Mr. Gohmert), who's been very helpful in putting together the 
final bill.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Mr. Speaker, on September 18, 2001, 7 days after the 
worst attack in American history, the authorized use of military force 
was passed. And I've come to understand how legislation can be 
hurriedly thrown together, and it was. We were in a crisis.
  In those days I was a judge. When I got to Congress and the NDAA came 
up to extend, reauthorize the AUMF, this issue of whether American 

[[Page H7393]]

were protected came up. Some mistakenly thought the NDAA did some 
granting of power to the President that he shouldn't have, but actually 
it was in the original AUMF. It said the President could basically go 
after any nation, organization, or person that he thought was a threat 
or may have participated. That needed to be reined in.
  I've worked with some of my colleagues, with professors, with legal 
experts. Even though one professor went to Harvard, they've been 
immensely helpful, and we've crafted language. And I even appreciate 
Senator Levin working with us and Chairman McKeon being willing to look 
at these different issues.
  Our original amendment included a 30-day requirement. Within 30 days 
there had to be a writ of habeas corpus hearing. Yet we got criticized, 
saying you're restricting to only 30 days, so we took that out.
  The language in here, as Mr. Nadler pointed out, does not protect 
American citizens in foreign countries. That will have to be done 
another day. But it does go beyond what I originally wanted to do and 
protects people that are in the United States, if they are authorized 
under our Constitution to have those protections.
  I am grateful that these things have been done. I'm grateful this 
language is in there to restrict the President's power back to what I 
think was appropriate under the Constitution. I will be voting for the 
NDAA and appreciate the chairman's indulgence in my push to get this 
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield 1 minute to the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Johnson), a member of the committee.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Mr. Speaker, I rise to thank the conferees 
for including in the NDAA language I authored to help prevent tragic 
cases of suicide among members of the military. Military suicides are, 
sadly, increasing, with 280 suicides this year in the Active Duty and 
Reserve Army alone.
  The new language would allow military commanding officers and mental 
health professionals to talk to troubled servicemembers about their 
personal firearms and encourage them to safely store those weapons in a 
military facility or by means of a gun lock. The prohibition of such 
confidential dialogue, which this language repeals, prevented 
potentially lifesaving conversations between counselors and 
  We owe it to our soldiers and their families and their loved ones to 
do everything we can to help them, and this language is a small step in 
that direction.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself the balance of 
my time to close. And I really want to close just to emphasize how 
important the work is that our staffs do, both in the House and the 
Senate. The work that they've done ever since May, when we first put 
together the bill on the House side, and then the accelerated time 
schedule that they had to operate under because the Senate waited until 
December 4 to pass their bill, and we had to throw together a quick 
conference report.
  There are an endless array of critically important legislative issues 
that are handled in this bill, and the staffs that we have do an 
amazing job under a tight timeline of working together to resolve 
differences and come up with the best legislation. We have an 
outstanding staff. We could not do this without them.
  Again I will emphasize that I hope this bill shows that it's possible 
that people who disagree--and you can hear from our debate there are 
many things we disagree strongly about, certainly Republicans and 
Democrats, but also House and Senate. Yet somehow we come together and 
put together this 1,600-page bill to spend $633 billion and provide for 
the common defense of the United States of America.
  So I urge support, and I thank all those involved in this work 
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. McKEON. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself the balance of the time.
  Mr. Speaker, I once again rise in support of this bipartisan fiscal 
year 2013 National Defense Authorization Conference Report, and I 
concur totally with the concluding remarks of Mr. Smith. Our staff has 
done a fantastic job. And I have enjoyed working with him, and we will 
continue to work together in a bipartisan way.
  This NDAA bill passed the Armed Services Committee on a vote of 56-5. 
It passed the full House by nearly 300 votes; and, likewise, the Senate 
adopted its version of the bill unanimously.
  However, I fully acknowledge we had to tackle tough issues in a very 
compressed timeframe, as Mr. Smith pointed out. Every one of us could 
find something in this bill that we would rather change, but none of us 
can deny that this bill has been exhaustively debated. It's the only 
major authorization bill that's been able to proceed through regular 
order in both the House and the Senate this year.
  The House considered 303 amendments, between the committee and the 
floor. The Senate considered at least 151 amendments. We've all had a 
chance to have our say on this bill and to have the Congress act its 
  I urge my colleagues to join me in ushering this bill across the 
finish line and vote ``yes'' on adoption of the conference report. This 
is a good piece of legislation that's critically needed by our troops.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I rise in opposition to the 
Conference Report on the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 but 
will use this statement to speak of the silver lining in this otherwise 
flawed legislation.
  The silver lining of which I speak is Title 7, Section 737, which 
includes language for a breast cancer study. Last night before the 
Rules Committee I spoke of an amendment I offered to H.R. 4310 
``National Defense Authorization Act,'' which directed the Department 
of Defense Office of Health to work in collaboration with the National 
Institutes of Health to identify specific genetic and molecular targets 
and biomarkers for Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC). In addition, 
the amended language was designed to result in the generation of 
information that could then be useful in biomarker selection, drug 
discovery, and clinical trials design. This will enable medical 
professionals to identify TNBC patients earlier in the progression of 
their disease and would help advance the development of multiple 
targeted therapies for the disease.
  My amendment which passed the House was designed to highlight the 
importance of studying and eventually finding effective treatments for 
triple negative breast cancer.
  I was pleased to note that, although it was not included in the bill 
we vote on tonight, my amendment helped generate the language included 
today in Title 7, Section 737 which highlights the importance of breast 
cancer among members of the armed services. I wish to emphasis the 
importance of addressing trople negative breast cancer and that this 
aspect must be included in the National Defense Reauthorize.
  Triple negative breast cancer is a specific strain of breast cancer 
for which no targeted treatment is available. The American Cancer 
Society calls this particular strain of breast cancer ``an aggressive 
subtype associated with lower survival rates.''
  I believe that through a coordinated effort between the DOD and NIH 
that they can develop a targeted treatment for the triple negative 
breast cancer strain.
  Breast cancers with specific, targeted treatment methods, such as 
hormone and gene based strains, have higher survival rates than the 
triple negative subtype, highlighting the need for a targeted 
  Today, Breast cancer accounts for 1 in 4 cancer diagnoses among women 
in this country. It is also the most commonly diagnosed cancer among 
African American women. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 
2011, more than 26,000 African American women will be diagnosed with 
breast cancer, and another 6,000 will die from the disease.
  Between 2002 and 2007, African American women suffered a 39% higher 
death rate from breast cancer than other groups.
  African American women are also 12% less likely to survive five years 
after a breast cancer diagnosis. One reason for this disparity is that 
African American women are disproportionally affected by triple 
negative breast cancer.
  More than 30% of all breast cancer diagnoses in African American are 
of the triple negative variety. Black women are far more susceptible to 
this dangerous subtype than white or Hispanic women.

                               FAST FACTS

  Breast cancer accounts for 1 in 4 cancer diagnoses among women in 
this country.
  The survival rate for breast cancer has increased to 90% for White 
women but only 78% for African American Women.
  African-American women are more likely to be diagnosed with larger 
tumors and more advanced stages of breast cancer.

[[Page H7394]]

  Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is a term used to describe 
breast cancers whose cells do not have estrogen receptors and 
progesterone receptors, and do not have an excess of the HER2 protein 
on their cell membrane of tumor cells.
  Triple Negative Breast Cancer (TNBC) cells are usually of a higher 
grade and size; onset at a younger age; more aggressive; and more 
likely to metastasize.
  TNBC also referred to as basal-like (BL) due to their resemblance to 
basal layer of epithelial cells, there is not a formal detailed 
classification of system of the subtypes of these cells. TNBC is in 
fact a heterogeneous group of cancers; with varying differences in 
prognosis and survival rate between various subtypes. This has led to a 
lot of confusion amongst both physicians and patients.
  Apart from surgery, cytotoxic chemotherapy is the only available 
treatment, targeted molecular treatments while being investigated are 
not accepted treatment.
  Between 10-17% of female breast cancer patients have the triple 
negative subtype.
  Triple-negative breast cancer most commonly affects African-American 
women, followed by Hispanic women. African-American women have a 
prevalence of TNBC of 26% vs 16% in non-African-American women.
  TNBC usually affects women under 50 years of age. African American 
women have a prevalence of premenopausal breast cancer of 26% vs 16% 
for Non-African American Women.
  Women with TNBC are at 3 times the risk of death than women with the 
most common type of breast cancer.
  Women with TNBC are more likely to have distance metastases in the 
brain and lung and more common subtypes of breast cancer.
  Finally, Mr. Speaker I want to point out a part of this bill which I 
find vexing; that which relates to detainee policy. Our Constitution is 
a living document but sometimes we must go to great pains to emphasize 
this point when some of its most basic protections are threatened or 
simply ignored. The text continues the asserted authority of the U.S. 
Government to hold even U.S. citizens (persons) captured on U.S. soil 
indefinitely and without charge. This must be reviewed!
  The language in this bill concerning the law of detention has major 
implications for our fundamental rights that should be considered on 
their own and not included as part of a Defense Authorization bill. 
These provisions should be the subject of close scrutiny by the 
Judiciary Committee.
  The complex legal and constitutional issues should be properly 
analyzed, and the implications for our bedrock values of liberty and 
freedom carefully considered. I am mindful that we are charged with 
pursuing a great many issues and cannot fully address them all in a 
single setting; yet this is too important to again, be included as part 
of an authorization as if these were routine matters.
  The Conference Report states that ``[n]othing in the Authorization 
for Use of Military Force . . . or the National Defense Authorization 
Act for Fiscal Year 2012 . . . shall be construed to deny the 
availability of the writ of habeas corpus or to deny any Constitutional 
rights in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of 
the Constitution to any person inside the United States who would be 
entitled to the availability of such writ or to such rights in the 
absence of such laws.''
  This language simply continues the flawed policies established in the 
2011 Defense Authorization Bill.
  Ms. LORETTA SANCHEZ of California. Mr. Speaker, as a conferee and 
senior member of the House Armed Forces Committee, due to unforeseen 
health complications, I was unable to sign the Conference Report to 
H.R. 4310, the National Defense Authorization Act of FY2013 on December 
18, 2012. If I had the opportunity to sign the Conference Report to 
H.R. 4310, I would have signed it.
  Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise to oppose what will be the final 
National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) I will face as a Member of 
the U.S. House of Representatives. As many of my colleagues are aware, 
I have always voted against the NDAA regardless of what party controls 
the House. Far from simply providing an authorization for the money 
needed to defend this country, which I of course support, this 
authorization and its many predecessors have long been used to fuel 
militarization, enrich the military industrial complex, expand our 
empire overseas, and purchase military and other enormously expensive 
equipment that we do not need and in large part does not work anyway. 
They wrap all of this mess up in false patriotism, implying that 
Members who do not vote for these boondoggles do not love their 
  The military industrial complex is a jigsaw puzzle of seemingly 
competing private companies; but they are in reality state-sponsored 
enterprises where well-connected lobbyists, usually after long and 
prosperous careers in the military or government, pressure Congress to 
fund pet projects regardless of whether we can afford them or whether 
they are needed to defend our country. This convenient arrangement is 
the welfare of the warfare state.
  Because of the false perception that we must pass this military 
spending authorization each year or our men and women in uniform will 
go hungry, Congress has over the years taken the opportunity to pack it 
with other items that would have been difficult to pass on their own. 
This is nothing new on Capitol Hill. In the last few years, however, 
this practice has taken a sinister turn.
  The now-infamous NDAA for fiscal year 2012, passed last year, granted 
the president the authority to indefinitely detain American citizens 
without charge, without access to an attorney, and without trial. It is 
difficult to imagine anything more un-American than this attack on our 
Constitutional protections. While we may not have yet seen the 
widespread use of this unspeakably evil measure, a wider application of 
this ``authority'' may only be a matter of time.
  Historically these kinds of measures have been used to bolster state 
power at the expense of unpopular scapegoats. The Jewish citizens of 
1930s Germany knew all about this reprehensible practice. Lately the 
scapegoats have been mostly Muslims. Hundreds, perhaps many more, even 
Americans, have been held by the U.S. at Guantanamo and in other secret 
prisons around the world.
  But this can all change quickly, which makes it all the more 
dangerous. Maybe one day it will be Christians, gun-owners, 
homeschoolers, etc.
  That is why last year, along with Reps. Justin Amash, Walter Jones, 
and others, we attempted to simply remove the language from the NDAA 
(sec. 1021) that gave the president this unconstitutional authority. It 
was a simple, readable amendment. Others tried to thwart our 
straightforward efforts by crafting elaborately worded amendments that 
in practice did noting to protect us from this measure in the bill. 
Likewise this year there were a few celebrated but mostly meaningless 
attempts to address this issue. One such effort passed in the senate 
version of this bill. The conferees have simply cut it out. The will of 
Congress was thus ignored by a small group of Members and Senators 
named by House and Senate leadership.
  There are many other measures in this NDAA Conference Report to be 
concerned about. It continues to fund our disastrous wars in 
Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, and elsewhere for example.
  The Conference Report contains yet another round of doomed-to-fail 
new sanctions against Iran. These are acts of war against Iran without 
actually firing a shot. But this time the House and Senate conferees 
are going further than that. The report contains language that pushes 
the U.S. as close to an actual authorization for the use of force 
against Iran as we can get. The Report ``. . . asserts that the U.S. 
should be prepared to take all necessary measures, including military 
action if required, to prevent Iran from threatening the U.S., its 
allies, or Iran's neighbors with a nuclear weapon and reinforces the 
military option should it prove necessary.''
  This kind of language just emboldens Iran's enemies in the region to 
engage in increasingly reckless behavior with the guarantee that the 
U.S. military will step in if they push it too far. That is an unwise 
move for everyone concerned.
  This Conference Report contains increased levels of foreign military 
aid, including an additional half-billion dollars in missile assistance 
to an already prosperous Israel and some $300 million to help an 
increasingly prosperous Russia control its chemical, nuclear, and 
biological weapons. And Russia does not even want the money!
  Overall, this authorization will give the president even more money 
for military activities next year than he requested. At a time when the 
news has been dominated by reports of our budget crisis, the ``fiscal 
cliff,'' and the ``need'' to increase taxes on Americans, Congress is 
foolishly spending even more on the military budget than the 
administration wants! I suppose that is what counts as a reduction in 
the language of Washington.
  I urge my colleagues to oppose this, and all future, reckless and 
dangerous military spending bills that are destroying our national 
security by destroying our economy.

                              {time}  1640

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. All time for debate has expired.
  Pursuant to House Resolution 840, the previous question is ordered.
  The question is on adoption of the conference report.
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the ayes appeared to have it.
  Mr. SMITH of Washington. Mr. Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and 
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER. Pursuant to clause 8 of rule XX, further proceedings on 
this question will be postponed.

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