Charlie Dent (PA-15) on Wednesday night was among the 283 House members to vote for a $662 Defense spending bill, slightly less than the amount sought by President Obama.
Lawmakers softened language in the legislation, providing that foreign terrorists are subject to military custody. The bill explicitly exempts U.S. citizens, and gives the President the option of prosecuting terrorism suspects in the civilian justice system, too.
According to the AP, it's a "rare instance of bipartisanship in a bitterly divided Congress." In fact, it sailed through the Senate on Thursday.
“I am pleased the current spell of political wrangling in Washington has not impacted Congress’s ability to pass critical national security legislation like H.R. 1450,” said Rep. Dent in a statement after his vote. “This bill ensures members of our armed forces, especially those stationed in Afghanistan and remaining in Iraq, possess the training, resources, and equipment they need to win the global war on terror. It also guarantees our military remains the most powerful and modern force in the world, fully capable of defending the American people from potential foreign aggressors and international terrorist networks.”
The bill authorizes $554 billion for DOD, including $115.5 billion for overseas military operations and $10 billion for the continued development of a missile defense system to protect the American homeland. H.R. 1450 also requires the President to sanction entities, including central banks, who engage in financial transactions with the Central Bank or Iran. Additionally, the measure freezes aid to Pakistan until the DOD develops a new strategy to improve the effectiveness of American assistance and confirms Pakistan is taking steps to eliminate domestic-based threats to American forces operating in Afghanistan.