The U.S. Senate approved $700 billion in defense spending on Monday. The bill passed 89-8, earning a rare and overwhelming bipartisan majority. It calls for significantly more defense spending than President Donald Trump has requested, and is well above the current $549 billion congressional spending cap.
Claudia Grisales, Capitol Hill reporter for the military newspaper Stars and Stripes says senators were motivated by past cuts in military spending, as well as recent accidents involving Navy ships.
“Just this summer, there were two collisions at sea…17 sailors were lost in those incidents,” Grisales says. “[There have been] other military crashs and accidents. That’s what’s fueling this larger budget this year.”
The Trump administration has proposed a military spending increase, Grisales says, but the Senate chose to add money not only to continue war-fightin in Afghanistan and Iraq and enhance readiness and safety, but for missile defense as well.
Written by Shelly Brisbin.