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1996 Congressional Material

FY96 Defense Authorization
General Matters
Floor Debates
Defend America Act
House Defense Appropriations
House Defense Authorization
Senate Defense Appropriations
Senate Defense Authorization Defense Authorization Conference Report

FY96 Defense Authorization

  • On the 3rd of January the House debated and voted on the bill but failed to override the President's veto of the FY96 Defense Authorization Bill.

General Matters

  • Senator Inhofe expressed his concern on 3 January over the Presidential veto.
  • On 5 January the death of the "Father of SDI," General Dan Graham, was lamented by Rep. Frank Wolf.
  • Senators Kyl and Smith spoke on missile defenses on January 31.
  • Rep. Rohrabacher paid tribute to General Graham on February 1.
  • On February 6, Senator Helms introduced legislation to force U.S. withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.
  • On February 27, Rep. Curt Weldon gave a long speech on missile defense criticizing Administration policies.
  • On February 28, Rep. Spence released a short paper on ballistic missile threats.
  • Senators Inhofe and Dorgan debated missile defenses on 28 February.
  • On March 15th Senator Kyl quoted James Woolsey's missile threat assessment.
  • commented on the National Missile Defense Act of 1996 on March 25.
  • And on 29 March Senator Inhofe invoked the anniversary of Ronald Reagan's 1983 Strategic Defense Initiative Speech.
  • Rep. Lee H. Hamilton The Missile Defense Debate Rep. Lee H. Hamilton on Foreign Affairs, May 1996/Volume XVI No. 5
  • Rep. Smith of Michigan celebrated the Republican "Contract with America" and its revitalization of anti-missile defense advocacy on 27 September.
  • Sen. Heflin, whose tenure in the Senate was near an end, discussed his support for SDI and other proposed ABM programs on 1 October.
  • Sen. Inhofe explained his opposition to the ABM Treaty and his support for new BMD initiatives, citing a Reader's Digest article: 'Defenseless Against Missile Terror' on 3 October.
  • And on 21 October, Sen. Heflin expressed support for increased funding for NASA and defense activities in space.

Floor Debate

Defend America Act

House Defense Appropriations

House Defense Authorization

Senate Defense Appropriations

  • The Military Construction Appropriation Bill for 1997, in the Senate, 20 June.
  • On 11 July, the Senate commenced consideration of S1894, the Department of Defense Appropriations Bill for Fiscal Year 1997. Senators Stevens and Inouye expressed support for BMD spending under the Bill.
  • Senator Dorgan proposed Amendment 4460 to the Defense Appropriations Bill for missile defense spending on 12 July.
  • Sen. Stevens (acting for Lieberman) tabled Amendment 4482 to the Defense Appropriations Bill for theatre missile defense on 12 July.
  • On 17 July, in the midst of debates over the Defense Appropriations Bill for F.Y. 1997, Senator Inhofe spoke out against the ABM Treaty and for a national missile defense system.
  • And on 18 July, Senators Byrd, Glenn, Hatfield,and Dorgan expressed reservations about the Defense Appropriations Bill for Fiscal Year 1997. Nevertheless, the Bill passed with a vote of 72 to 27 .
  • On 19 July, Sen. Leahy expressed his concern about the passage of the Defense Appropriations Bill the day before, citing the allocation of $3.3 billion for BMD programs.
  • In September, the Defense Appropriations Bill returned to the Senate under the guise of the consolidated omnibus bill(H.R.4278)/conference report (H.R. 3610) - following the conference agreement reached by the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee and the House. The conference report allocated less money to the Department of Defense than the House and Senate had requested, but provided more money than the President had requested. On 28 September, Sen. Hutchison wanted to ensure BMD funding increased.
  • On 30 September, Sen. Stevens also expressed his support for the omnibus bill, which included increased spending for national missile defense. Sen. Stevens (and Sen. Gregg) also discussed funding for Lincoln Lab, a BMD research site.
  • On 30 September, the conference report H.R. 3610 became public law No. 104-208 after passing in the House on 28 September and in the Senate on 30 September. H.R. 4278, the omnibus appropriations bill, was still being debated. Sen. Kerry criticized Republicans on 1 October for high levels of BMD funding under the omnibus bill. Measures for H.R. 4278 were indefinitely postponed.

Senate Defense Authorization

Defense Authorization Conference Report

  • On 2 August, Sen. Warner supported the conference report for the 1997 Defense Authorization Bill, H.R. 3230, which would authorize spending levels above President Clinton's requests for missile defense.
  • On 7 September, Sen. Smith supported increased spending for the BMD Organization under the conference report for the Defense Authorization Bill for F.Y. 1997. Sen. Inhofe also wanted greater spending on national missile defense.
  • Senators Thurmond and Nunn supported the conference report for H.R. 3230, which included increased spending on BMD programs on 9 September. Sen. Byrd, however, expressed reservations about the conference report because of its spending priorities.
  • The Bill included the Nunn-Lugar-Domenici Defense Against Weapons of Mass Destruction Act of 1996 which was explained in the conference report.
  • Senators debated the conference report for the National Defense Authorization Act for F.Y. 1997 on 10 September. The report passed with a vote of 73 to 26.

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