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Biden Signs $768 Billion Defense Spending Bill Into Law

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President Joe Biden on Monday signed into law a nearly $770 billion defense bill, setting policy for the Pentagon on a number of areas, the White House announced.

The sweeping National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year 2022 authorizes a 5 percent increase ($25 billion) in military spending from last year and includes a 2.7 percent pay raise for most military service members.

Congress earlier this month scrambled to pass the annual legislation, with the Senate and the House of Representatives voting overwhelmingly in favor of the bill after several hurdles over China and Russia policy.

“The Act provides vital benefits and enhances access to justice for military personnel and their families, and includes critical authorities to support our country’s national defense,” Biden said in a statement after approving the policy.

The $768.2 billion bill was passed by the House in early December in a 363-70 vote, while the Senate passed the NDAA by a 88-11 vote.

The NDAA is closely watched by a broad swath of industry and other interests because it is one of the only major pieces of legislation that becomes law every year and because it addresses a wide range of issues. The NDAA has become law every year for six decades.

It sets policy for the Pentagon on a wide range of areas, and this year’s legislation includes more aircraft and Navy ship purchases to meet the increasing threats directed at Taiwan from China’s ruling communist party, and outlines strategies with a particular focus on “strategic competition” with China and Russia.

On China, the bill triples funding for the Pacific Deterrence Initiative in the Indo-Pacific at a cost of $7.1 billion and outlines a statement of congressional support for the defense of Taiwan. It also includes a ban on the Department of Defense procuring products produced with forced labor from China’s northwestern Xinjiang region. Continue Reading

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