Madam Chair, I thank you for bringing forward the Fiscal Year 2022 Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies appropriations bill today.
I also want to thank the ranking member, Mr. Simpson, for his leadership on this subcommittee.
As a result of your work, this bill addresses the priorities of Members on both sides of the aisle and does many good things for the American people.
In particular, I appreciate that the bill continues significant funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for navigation and flood control projects that are so important to our economy and public safety.
Unfortunately, just like with the other bills the committee has considered, this bill is based on a funding framework that lacks bipartisan support.
I am also concerned that the funding decisions in this bill could leave us vulnerable to countries that do not have our best interests at heart.
For example, the bill significantly underfunds efforts to modernize our nuclear weapons complex.
We must have a reliable and effective nuclear deterrent to ensure our national security.
On the non-defense side of the bill, funding priorities are focused primarily on activities that will reverse the gains in energy independence we’ve made over the past decade.
The approach taken in this bill will actually cause us to increase our dependence on China for critical minerals.
A bipartisan agreement on the overall funding framework would allow us to better address these national security concerns.
I hope we can resolve these issues in a timely manner so this year’s appropriations bills can be signed into law.
Thank you, Madam Chair, I yield back.
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