Washington, DC – Today Foreign Policy for America Statement released the following statement on the House passage of H.R. 7900, the FY2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
“While we are disappointed that efforts to bring topline spending levels back in line with the President’s Budget Request did not succeed, we were pleased that several key amendments to strengthen American diplomacy and respond to the international challenge of climate change were included in this year’s bill,” said Ben Weingrod, Senior Director for Policy at Foreign Policy for America. “That said, it remains troubling that Congress continues to advance diplomatic policy through the National Defense Authorization Act rather than through legislation focused on the Department of State. We strongly urge Congress to pass another State Department Authorization Act this year.”
Key diplomacy focused amendments attached to the FY2023 NDAA include:
The House of Representatives took a major step forward in reclaiming powers of war and peace through the passage of three critical amendments repealing outdated Authorizations of Use of Military Force (AUMF), including one offered by Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) to repeal the 2022 AUMF against Iraq, an amendment offered by Representative Abigail Spanberger (D-VA) to repeal the 1991 AUMF against Iraq, and an amendment offered by Representative Peter Meijer (R-MI) an Eisenhower-era Middle East AUMF.
Efforts to coordinate subnational diplomacy by American cities and states were supported by passage of the bipartisan City and State Diplomacy Amendment amendment offered by Representatives Ted Lieu (D-CA) and Joe Wilson (R-SC).
Restoring parity between defense and diplomacy and development was supported through a bipartisan amendment offered by Representatives Ami Bera (D-CA) and Steve Chabot (R-OH) that mandates an assessment by the diplomatic and development resources needed to fulfill the U.S. Indo-Pacific Strategy.
Multiple amendments also addressed the growing need to address climate change globally, including:
A requirement authored by Representative Linda Sánchez (D-CA) that requires the U.S. support NATO efforts to address climate security, including through implementing the NATO 2022 Strategic Concept and the establishment of a NATO Center of Excellence for Climate and Security.
An amendment authored by Representative Steven Horsford (D-NV) to track and reduce Scope 3 emissions and energy costs generated by the Department of Defense’s extensive value chain. The Department of Defense is the single largest energy consumer in the U.S.
Language offered by Representatives Scott Peters (D-CA), Jason Crow (D-CO), and Katie Porter (D-CA) to add climate resilience and other critical environmental focused activities as eligible areas of security assistance support under the Combatant Commander Initiative Fund.