June 14, 2013(Key vote)
Title: National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014
Vote Smart's Synopsis:
Vote to pass a bill that authorizes Department of Defense appropriations for fiscal year 2014 and amends laws concerning rape and sexual assault in the military.
Appropriates funds for fiscal year 2014 for military activities of the Department of Defense, for military construction, for defense activities of the Department of Energy, and for other purposes (Sec. 2).
Prohibits a convening authority from dismissing or modifying to a lesser offense the findings of a court-martial on guilty charges of a military member in cases of rape, sexual assault, other sex-related offenses, or assault on a child under 16 years of age (Title 5, Sec. 531).
Prohibits a convening authority from modifying or suspending a sentence of confinement or discharge of a military member (Title 5, Sec. 531).
Specifies that a military member can be charged, tried and punished at any time for rape, sexual assault, or rape or sexual assault of a child (Title 5, Sec. 532).
Requires a minimum punishment of dismissal or dishonorable discharge and confinement for 2 years for a military member who is convicted of rape, sexual assault, forcible sodomy, or an attempt to commit rape, sexual assault, or forcible sodomy (Title 5, Secs. 533 & 550A).
Establishes a Victims’ Counsel to provide legal consultation to victims of sex-related offenses, including, but not limited to, legal consultation regarding (Title 5, Sec. 536):
Consultation about military defense service if the sex-related offense happened in or stemmed from a criminally liable situation;
Consultation about the Victim Witness Assistance Program;
Consultation about the responsibilities and support provided by the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator;
Consultation about the military justice system; and
Consultation about services available for emotional and mental health counseling.
Requires the Secretary of Defense to conduct a review of military criminal investigative organizations regarding the investigation of sex-related offenses (Title 5, Sec. 539).
Requires the secretary of each military branch to develop a curriculum that includes training for sexual assault prevention and response, and education about sex-related offenses (Title 5, Sec. 540).
Requires a written incident report within 8 days after an unrestricted report of sexual assault against a member of the military has been made (Title 5, Sec. 545).
Prohibits military service and character of the accused from being used as factors during consideration of a sex-related offense (Title 5, Sec. 546).
Requires the inclusion of letter of reprimands and counseling statements involving proven cases of sexual harassment and sexual assault in the performance evaluations of members of the military (Title 5, Sec. 547).
Requires the Response Systems Panel to assess the impact of removing authority over reports of sexual assault cases from the chain of command (Title 5, Sec. 549).
Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this bill for constructing or modifying any facility in the United States meant to house detainees transferred from the United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Title 10, Sec. 1032).
Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this bill for the transfer or release of individuals detained in the United States Naval Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba on or after January 20, 2009, to the United States (Title 10, Sec. 1034).
Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this bill for the transfer or release any individuals detained at United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to Yemen (Title 10, Sec. 1040D).
Requires the Secretary of Defense to provide a written certification to release any detainee from the United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and that the certification include the following, but not limited to: (Title 10, Sec. 1033):
Information about the government of the foreign country to which the individual is to be transferred;
Information about the detainee’s history of recidivism; and
Information about the detainee’s record of cooperation.
Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this bill to reduce or decommission any part of the nuclear triad, which consists of land based ballistic missiles, submarine launched ballistic missiles, and nuclear-certified strategic bombers (Title 10, Sec. 1051).
Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this bill to reduce nuclear forces required by the treaty between the United States and the Russian Federation on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (New START Treaty) until the Secretary of Defense and the President meet certain conditions and Congress authorizes the reductions (Title 10, Sec. 1052).
Title: Authorizes Military Sexual Assault Victims to Decide who Determines Their Case
Vote Smart's Synopsis:
Vote on a motion to recommit the bill with an amendment that authorizes members of the military who are victims of sexual assault or sex-related offenses to specify that the charge be referred to the staff judge advocate or to the Office of the Chief Prosecutor.
Requires the convening authority of court-martial cases involving charges of sexual assault or other sex-related offenses to refer the charge to the Office of the Chief Prosecutor of the branch of the military of which the accused is a member.
Requires the convening authority to direct a trial of the charge by general court-martial if the Office of the Chief Prosecutor recommends that the charge go to trial.
Authorizes a victim of sexual assault or other sex-related offenses to specify that the charge be referred to the staff judge advocate rather than the Office of the Chief Prosecutor.
Requires the Judge Advocate General of any Armed Force that does not have a position of Chief Prosecutor to establish the position and appoint a commissioned officer with “significant” experience prosecuting sexual assault trials by court-martial to that position.
NOTE: THIS IS A MOTION TO RECOMMIT THIS LEGISLATION TO A COMMITTEE WITH INSTRUCTIONS FOR AMENDMENTS. IF THE AMENDMENTS ARE ADOPTED, THE LEGISLATION GOES BACK TO THE FLOOR FOR A VOTE ON FINAL PASSAGE.