This week, Florida Rep. Michael Waltz (R) issued a statement in support of the FY23 Defense Bill. Waltz, who is the Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness, spoke in favor of the bill, which includes numerous of his priorities.
Praising the House Armed Services Committee for the passing the bill, he said that this bill aims “to address the threats of today by bolstering our military with the funding they need rather than the minimal resources requested by the Biden Administration.”
“With the Committee’s passage of the NDAA, we’ve given our warfighters $37 billion more in resources that take into account our inflation crisis worsened by the policies of the Biden Administration,” Waltz commented, adding that the bill “secured military construction funding for military bases and installations across Florida that ensures the Sunshine State remains the most military-friendly state in our country.”
Citing the Chinese Communist Party as a threat, Waltz expressed that their “technology and military capabilities are advancing as rapidly as its ambitions.”
In turn, the defense bill is a frontline against growing threats with Waltz expressing that it “will help us ensure America can face those challenges and any others while protecting our strategic interests at home and abroad – while improving the quality of life for the men and women of our armed services and their families.”
In a press release from the Florida Republican, several of his priorities are listed in the bill.
- Authorize joint, commander level, multi-domain, interoperable military exercises with Taiwan to help prepare and protect the island from potential Chinese military aggression
- Permanently prohibit purchases of goods by the Defense Department from the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region in China
- Require the universities in China that support the Chinese Communist Party’s military to be identified and listed by the Defense Department and intelligence agencies
- Allocate funding for new construction projects at Florida military bases, including Patrick Space Force Base, Camp Blanding Joint Training Center, MacDill Air Force Base, and Eglin Air Force Base
- Set gender-neutral fitness standards for combat military occupational specialties in the U.S. Army
- Ensure critically injured members of the Armed Forces are afforded protections, privileges, and rights to due process through the Wounded Warrior Bill of Rights
- Expand the Defense Department’s stockpile of rare-earth elements and critical minerals, requires country of origin disclosures, and bans purchase of critical materials from Chinese military companies.
- Oversight of “Over-the-Horizon” Counterterrorism Operations in Afghanistan
- Prohibit abandonment of K9s on the battlefield and accountability requirements for K9s
- Promote collaboration between the U.S. and Israel to develop best-practices in researching, diagnosing, and treating PTSD
- Appoint an Inspector General to oversee U.S. aid to Ukraine
- Direct military construction funding to the Baltic states and Eastern Europe
- Authorize the creation of the Space National Guard
- Increase funding for Space Force’s rapid and responsive launch program
- Require a federal government strategy for research & development efforts on blockchain, or distributed ledger technologies
- Exempt Gold Star families from naturalization processing fees
- Fund the Armed Overwatch program for U.S. Special Forces