Biden Administration Opposes H.R. 8580, Cites Partisan Provisions

Written from OMB statement:

WASHINGTON — June 3, 2024

The Biden Administration has announced its strong opposition to H.R. 8580, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2025. The bill, introduced by Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), faces criticism for its numerous partisan provisions and proposed funding reallocations.

The Administration expressed disappointment that House Republicans are pushing forward with a bill that includes deep cuts to essential services such as law enforcement, education, healthcare, and consumer safety programs. “These partisan bills would threaten vital investments in areas like climate change initiatives, reproductive healthcare, and services for LGBTQI+ Americans,” the Administration stated.

A significant point of contention is the bill’s proposed realignment of military construction funding. The Administration opposes the shift of funds from priority projects to other projects, which would create an unfunded obligation of over $832 million and divert funds from high-priority military construction requirements.

Additionally, the Administration objects to provisions that would prohibit the closure or realignment of Guantanamo Bay and prevent the transfer of detainees to the United States. These sections, the statement argues, would interfere with the President’s authority to manage the disposition of Guantanamo detainees.

Regarding Veterans Affairs (VA) programs, the Administration acknowledges the $129 billion discretionary appropriations for VA programs but opposes several provisions. These include restrictions on reproductive health services, bans on gender-affirming care, and limitations on VA’s ability to implement COVID-19 vaccination programs for healthcare personnel.

The Administration also expressed concerns over the bill’s impact on emergency services for individuals lacking legal status and the prohibition on reporting mentally incompetent beneficiaries to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. The latter, according to the Administration, would create a dangerous loophole allowing these individuals to obtain firearms.

The Administration is ready to work with Congress to enact responsible appropriations bills that fully fund federal agencies. However, if H.R. 8580 is presented to the President, he would veto it.

Rate this post

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 4

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Bloomingtonian on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!