U.S. Congressman Tom Rooney (R-Fla.) today announced approval by the House Armed Services Committee of H.R. 5136, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011. The legislation authorizes $567 billion in budget authority for the Department of Defense and the national security programs of the Department of Energy. The bill also authorizes $159 billion to support overseas contingency operations during FY 2011 and authorizes $34 billion for FY 2010 supplemental appropriations for overseas contingency operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, and to provide humanitarian and disaster assistance to assist victims following the earthquake in Haiti.
"This Defense package underscores our support for the troops by boosting their pay raise from 1.4 percent to 1.9 percent. The bipartisan agreement gives our commanders on the ground the flexibility in forces they need by removing any troop cap in Afghanistan," Rooney said.
Rooney demanded that the Department of Defense release the full report on its investigation into the Fort Hood Shooter, Nidal Malik Hasan, as the Committee debated an amendment that would have required the Administration to release the full details of its report. Rooney served as Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas, prosecuting all civilian crimes on Fort Hood, TX, then taught the Laws of War and the Uniform Code of Military Justice at the United States Military Academy at West Point from 2002-04.
"The American people deserve to know the full findings of the Administration's investigation into the Fort Hood shooting," Rooney said. "I am disappointed that the majority would not exercise the Committee's power to end the Administration's concealment of the restricted portion of this report because it may be politically embarrassing."
Democrats on the Committee rejected an effort to block funds from being used to transfer or release Guantanamo Bay detainees into the United States. "I wish my Democratic colleagues would have supported language to prevent the President from bringing detainees into the United States, but I am hopeful that we will be able to address that issue on the House floor," Rooney said.