Congressman Barney Frank today celebrated the passage of a bipartisan amendment, co-sponsored by Congressman Mick Mulvaney (R-SC), to the Defense Appropriations bill (H.R.5856), reducing the military budget for FY2013 by $1.1 billion.
The amendment passed the U.S. House of Representatives shortly before 7:00 pm Thursday night with a substantial majority, 247-167. 89 Republicans joined 158 Democrats voting in favor of the measure. The amended Defense Appropriations bill passed the House easily.
The Mulvaney-Frank amendment reduces military spending for fiscal year 2013 to the fiscal year 2012 spending level of approximately $518 billion. The amendment specifically exempts spending on military personnel, the Defense Health Program, and the Global War on Terror.
On Thursday morning, Representatives Frank and Mulvaney appeared jointly on the MSNBC program, Morning Joe, to press their case for responsible cuts to the military budget as part of an overall deficit reduction program. That evening, the bill passed the House on a strongly bipartisan basis.
Following passage of the amendment, Congressman Frank made the following statement:
Yesterday's vote in the House on a bipartisan amendment to freeze military spending leaves a defense budget that I believe is still far higher than it needs to be, but it does represent an important first step in making clear that military spending cannot be exempted from a responsible deficit reduction package. This vote by a large majority of the House, including 89 Republicans, rebuffs the argument from some that we can achieve responsible deficit reduction while simultaneously increasing military spending. Those of us who have been working on this issue will continue to work together and take the appropriate next steps.