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House Clears $738B Defense Budget Compromise in 377-48 Vote

Jeff Brody

The House of Representatives voted 377-48 Wednesday to pass legislation that would allocate $738B in defense budget for the next fiscal year and authorize the establishment of a Space Force military branch, Politico reported Wednesday.

President Donald Trump urged Congress not to delay passage of the compromise version of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act, which is still subject to a final vote in the Senate, and vowed he will immediately sign the bill upon submission to the White House.

The NDAA also offers parental leave to federal workers and seeks to eliminate the "widow’s tax" policy for military families.

Defense News reported the split between the GOP-controlled Senate and the full Democratic-led House has added complexity to this year's congressional negotiations on the defense policy bill.

“This is the most progressive defense bill we have passed in decades," said Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash., chairman of House Armed Services Committee.

“It has been incredibly challenging, but enormous credit goes to Chairman Smith for his patience and his persistence in working through with members here, the other body and the executive branch," added Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Texas, ranking member of HASC.

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