WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Kay Granger (R-TX), the Republican Leader of the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement today upon House passage of the FY2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

“Today’s House passage of the NDAA is vital to our national security.  I am proud to vote for a bill that is so important to this country and to thousands of jobs in the metroplex.  Our region is home to many defense companies of all sizes, that provide many of the  planes, helicopters, weapons and technology critically needed to secure our country.  I am proud to fight for and protect the jobs of so many of my constituents and ensure that the members of our military – particularly those at our exceptional base, JRB/NAS Fort Worth – have the tools and support they need.

“Russia, China, and countries like Iran and North Korea continue to pose the greatest threat to our national security. This bill includes critical authorizations to ensure our nation remains the preeminent global power and is prepared to meet and defeat all threats.  Of particular importance to my district, the NDAA authorizes 90 F-35s, to include 12 additional F-35A aircraft for the Air Force, and an additional $75.6 million for the Army’s Future Vertical Lift Capability Set 3 Program.

“The bill recognizes the vital role that Space plays in our national defense, establishing the President’s initiative, U.S. Space Force, as the sixth armed service and prioritizes the domain of Space as the next battleground.  China is now enjoying more successful space launches per year than the U.S., and their research and development for space related technologies continues to accelerate.  The U.S. Space Force will integrate our nation’s space efforts and ensure the United States maintains control of this most important domain.

“The NDAA also affirms our commitment to our military members and their families and recognizes the great service and sacrifice they make each and every day. From authorizing the largest pay increase in a decade, to extending Tricare Reserve Select to certain military reservists, and establishing a pilot program for the National Guard that allows immediate access to mental health care—this bill sends a clear signal to them and the rest of the country that their health and wellbeing is a national priority.  It also includes 12 weeks of paid parental leave to all federal civilian employees, including those directly supporting our national defense.

“Border security is national security, so I am very glad to see that the NDAA does not prohibit funding the border wall and does not restrict counterdrug programs that work to block drug smuggling on our Southwestern border – providing President Trump with the tools he needs to keep our nation safe.”