Ranking Member Smith Statement on President Signing 2016 National Defense Authorization Act

Washington D.C. – House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith made the following statement after President Obama signed the revised National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 into law:

November 25, 2015

"Today, the President signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016. Taking into account the terms of the Congressional Budget Agreement passed by the House on October 28th, this version of the National Defense Authorization Act gives the Department of Defense and our troops a predictable budget with which to plan, incorporates needed acquisition reform, and provides for the protection of our national security. Recent acts of terror throughout the world highlight the importance of this bill and the need for predictable funding for our Armed Forces. 

I voted for this revised National Defense Authorization Act. As I made clear then, the revised bill contains problematic provisions. This bill does not address necessary Base Realignment and Closure or personnel reforms. This bill does not close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay. I remain concerned with a number of provisions that are now codified into law, but I recognize that the bill is better than the original 2016 National Defense Authorization Act and is essential to providing our troops and the Department of Defense with the certainty they need to plan for the future. 

As we debate upcoming Appropriations bills and begin to work on the 2017 NDAA, it is imperative that the House, Senate and President work together to eliminate sequestration altogether. There is no doubt that sequestration and budget caps have threatened our national security. 

To truly empower our Armed Forces to protect our nation's security, combat terrorist networks, and fight extremism, we must eliminate sequestration and implement a long-term spending plan."