A $612 billion defense policy bill was passed Wednesday by the U.S. Senate and is expected to be vetoed by President Obama. The measure sets the defense policy, authorizes military pay and benefits and war funding.
The measure increases defense spending and contains the amount Obama requested, but it puts $38 million into an emergency war-fighting account and increases transfer restrictions for prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, both of which are not supported by the president.
Senator Roy Blunt (R-Missouri) has urged the president to sign that bill. He said protecting the country is Congress’ number one priority.
“I’m on the Senate committee that the CIA, Director of National Intelligence and others report to,” said Blunt. “They’re publicly not shy at all about saying that more things are coming at the country in more directions, with more potential danger than ever before. They need to be funded.”
Blunt said the bill also includes improvements for the military’s retirement system.
“The bill authorizes common sense reforms in a 70 year old outdated retirement system. Currently, 83% of the people who serve in the military don’t benefit from the retirement system,” said Blunt.
There do not appear to be enough votes to override a Presidential veto.