U.S.Representative John Fleming, M.D. (LA-4) released the following statement after joining his colleagues on the House Armed Services Committee earlier today in passing the FY 2013 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to provide the necessary authorities and funding for America's military. Rep. Fleming worked successfully for the adoption of an amendment that would halt the retirement of dozens of National Guard and Reserve aircraft, including the 24 A-10 Thunderbolts assigned to the 47th Fighter Squadron at Barksdale Air Force Base.
"This NDAA strikes the balance of showing concern for our government's growing debt while ensuring that our armed forces have the training, equipment, and leadershipneeded to carry out the mission of protecting the United States. The NDAA upholds our commitment to those who have served by rejecting Obama Administration proposals to create new TRICARE fees and increase others. It places responsible limits on the President's proposed troop reductions and provides a modest pay increase for our men and women in uniform. The FY13 NDAA would also protect the invaluable benefit soldiers at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk regularly receive from Barksdale's A-10s, which provide highly realistic close air support sorties. As the House and Senatecontinue working on the FY13 defense authorization and appropriation bills, I intend to work closely with Congressman Alexander and our state's U.S. Senators to ensure that this provision remains intact."
Dr. John Fleming is Chairman of the Natural Resources Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs and is a member of the House Armed Services Committee. He is a physician and small businessowner and represents the 4th Congressional District of Louisiana.