Oklahoma U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe expects a vote on their annual military spending bill soon after the Senate returns from recess in two weeks.
The $731 billion National Defense Authorization Act includes a 3% pay raise for troops and authorizes around three dozen kinds of special pay classifications. It also includes provisions to help military spouses move occupational licenses across state lines and to boost funding for school districts serving military families.
Senate Armed Services Committee Chair Inhofe said those sorts of things are the reasons the U.S. outspends China and Russia on defense.
"Now, you take a communist country like China or Russia, they don’t care about the troops. They give them a gun and say, ‘Go out and kill people.’ Well, so, no wonder we have to spend more when that’s the reason, and we’re going to continue to do that, and this bill does that," Inhofe said.
The National Defense Authorization Act could go to President Trump in November after going through conference committee, ahead of a Dec. 31 deadline. Inhofe said Trump has threatened to veto a defense spending bill that includes Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s (D-Massachusetts) amendment to strip names of Confederate generals from military installations.
"It’s controversial, it was the Warren amendment that was put in, and I have to say this: All but one Republican opposed that. I have to say that so people hear it and understand it, because that was true," Inhofe said.
According to Congressional news outlet Roll Call, Warren’s amendment was adopted by voice vote.