Latest on National Defense Authorization Act Amendments
The list of amendments that will be introduced for the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act is not yet finalized or complete, so we will be updating this blog as more information comes out of Congress. The issue is expected to be taken up on the floor Wednesday. We encourage you to make your call as soon as possible, but if you plan to call later, please check back here before doing so.
[update by MI Thursday 2:29 pm ET: The votes are in on the three key amendments we've been following. Here are the results with vote counts:
Conyers (Amdt #35): PASSED. 416 yeas, 5 nays.
Amash-Lee (Amdt #155): DID NOT PASS. 187 yeas, 234 nays.
McGovern-Jones (Amdt #30): DID NOT PASS. 204 yeas, 215 nays.
We'll have further analysis soon.]
[update by KG Tuesday 8:50 pm ET: The following amendments will be brought to the floor for a vote: McGovern/Jones exit strategy (Amdt # 30), Amash-Lee amendment to cut out authorization for permanent war (Amdt #155), and the Conyers amendment to cut funds for ground troops (Amdt #35). Rep. Lee's amendment to limit US funding to that which is necessary for the safe and orderly withdrawal of U.S. forces was not approved for a floor vote. Rules Committee posted all the approved amendments here]
[update by RN Tuesday 5 pm ET: CLW report is Afghanistan votes likely Thursday.]
[update by RN Tuesday 2:30 pm ET: Peace Action guess is first votes possible 1pm ET Wednesday.]
1. Call your Representative at 1-888-231-9276
2. When you reach your Representative's office, ask to speak to the staff person who handles foreign policy, or ask for the foreign policy staff person by name, if you know it. If this person is not available, leave your message with the person who answered the phone.
3. Tell them: "I urge you to support the McGovern-Jones amendment to end the war in Afghanistan, the Conyers amendment to stop military escalation in Libya, and the Amash-Lee amendment to strip the authorization for permanent war from the defense bill."
4. After you make your call, take a moment to tell us how your call went by leaving a comment on this blog post.
List of Amendments
And here is more information on the amendments we expect to be introduced:
1. McGovern-Jones amendment to end the war in Afghanistan (Amdt #30)
Congressmen Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Walter Jones (R-NC) have submitted an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that will call for an "accelerated transition" of US troops out of Afghanistan beginning in July. Their amendment is based on similar legislation they introduced earlier this month, the Afghanistan Exit and Accountability Act (HR 1735).
2. Conyers amendment to bar US "ground troops" from being sent to Libya (Amdt #35)
Congressman John Conyers (D-MI) has submitted an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that would bar the Administration from sending U.S. "ground troops" (i.e. uniformed members of the Armed Forces, rather than CIA or Special Forces who are already there) from being sent to Libya without explicit Congressional authorization.
3. Amash-Lee Amendment to Remove McKeon Authorization for Endless War (Amdt #155)
The Chair of the House Armed Services Committee, Buck McKeon (R-CA) has proposed legislation that would re-authorize and expand the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force, enabling endless, global war without the need for future Congressional authorization. Rep. McKeon recently added his bill to the National Defense Authorization Act.
Last week, the New York Times editorialized in support of removing the McKeon language. An amendment is expected to be proposed to remove the McKeon authorization from the National Defense Authorization Act.