As a Member of Congress, there is no greater honor than standing up and supporting the men and women of our nation’s Armed Services.
I’m humbled by the service and dedication that these individuals display each day and am incredibly grateful of the tremendous sacrifices they make to protect our freedoms and special way of life.
That’s one of the main reasons why I voted in support of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
The NDAA is the primary bill in Congress to provide vitally important funding and support for our Nation’s defense. I believe this bill is absolutely essential to our national security and its passage should be a priority for Members of Congress and the President.
That’s why I was pleased to see that the House of Representatives and the United States Senate approved the NDAA with strong bipartisan support. Unfortunately, President Obama vetoed this bill and put politics before bipartisan policy that would have helped our Troops, their families, bolstered our national security and created jobs in Maine.
Included in this year’s NDAA was an amendment I helped draft, which would have adjusted the requirements of the Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) program under the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Act.
By adjusting the HUBZone requirements, my amendment would have helped the former Brunswick Naval Air Station recruit businesses to come on to the base and qualify for the HUBZone program. This amendment would have given our job creators the confidence they need to start new businesses, create more jobs and help hire more Mainers.
Additionally, this NDAA bill included an important provision that would have provided funding for Bath Iron Works, which employs many hard-working Mainers, to construct an additional Arleigh Burke class destroyer. These advanced battleships help our Navy successfully accomplish their missions. Sadly, President Obama put our national security and Maine jobs in risk by vetoing this NDAA bill.
Furthermore, this NDAA bill would have provided our Troops with a much needed pay raise, allow for military personnel to carry firearms on military installations, provide child care at military installations, and much more.
Please know that I will always support the men and women of our Armed Services and will have their priorities in mind with every vote that I make in Congress.
We are all truly indebted to these brave men and women and owe it to them to provide them with the best healthcare, equipment, and security possible, both home and abroad, and before and after their service to our Great State of Maine and Country.
As Maine’s Second Congressional District Representative, I will urge my colleagues, both Republican and Democratic, to override the President’s veto so we can help our Troops, their families, bolster our national security and create more jobs in Maine.