State reauthorization vehicle leaves behind certain political objectives



But because state authorizing language was binding on the defense policy measure, which lawmakers regard as a priority, reliably adopting it every year for the past six decades, Senate Republicans were able to insist that several provisions popular with Democrats be removed.

“Unfortunately, several important provisions were not incorporated into the final language of the NDAA, including strong measures related to the brutal war in Yemen, accountability for Saudi Arabia’s actions against dissidents and civil society and diversity provisions and other management reforms within the State Department, “Meeks said.” I am very disappointed that… we were not able to secure the necessary support from Senate Republicans to move them forward in the final package. “

While the Democratic and Republican leaders of the House Foreign Affairs and Senate Foreign Relations panels were able to come to an agreement among themselves on parts of the bill passed by the House – as well as on additional provisions developed by the House SFRC – To collectively lobby for inclusion in the defense bill, the final decision was ultimately out of their hands, Democratic aides said in an interview.

Some headlines included in the HFAC bill related to security assistance and anti-corruption were cut short during conference negotiations with the SFRC, which Democratic staff members, who were granted anonymity in order to discuss the deliberations on the bill in more detail, allocated senators who did not have enough time to familiarize themselves with the provisions before needing to present a consensus text to the leaders of the armed services of the Senate and the House.

“These things are important but they are more thematic policy issues,” said one of the Democratic staff members, describing the arrangements that were left on the cutting room floor. “The thrust of this bill was to start with the obvious fruit at hand. The State Department needs clearances and authorities to manage itself and effectively manage its staff and effectively manage its embassies abroad.



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