Washington D.C. — U.S. Representative Mike Rogers (R-AL), Lead Republican of the House Armed Services Committee, delivered the following opening remarks at a House Committee on Rules hearing regarding H.R. 4350, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22).
Lead Republican Rogers’ remarks as prepared for delivery:
Chairman McGovern, Ranking Member Cole, members of the Committee, thank you for having me here today.
And thank you and your staff for helping us get the FY22 NDAA to the House floor.
I’d also like to thank Chairman Smith for his great work on the NDAA.
There is no better partner to have, and I am grateful for his leadership.
Over the last few months, we have seen the best of our soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen, and guardians.
They have performed in the toughest of environments and done so with the greatest level of skill and professionalism.
Many gave their lives so others would have a chance at a better life.
Without a doubt, our military is the greatest force for good the world has ever seen.
Providing the authorities and resources our troops need to defend our nation and defeat our adversaries is the greatest responsibility we have here in Congress.
We accomplish that responsibility with this NDAA.
We make investments to ensure our warfighters are the best equipped and trained in the world.
We put our servicemembers first, providing a 2.7 percent pay raise and expanding benefits for families.
We put American workers first with historic investments and incentives for our defense industrial base.
We include the right investments in emerging technologies, such as AI, quantum computing, hypersonic weapons, and autonomous systems.
Most importantly, we take a hard look at legacy systems that are maintained by Congress, but no longer needed by our warfighter.
Many of these systems will not help us deter future threats.
This bill begins divesting in those systems, while investing in systems that will enable us to stay ahead of our adversaries.
China is rapidly growing its military and seeks to become the dominate nation-state by 2049.
China is already testing international norms, while expanding its reach to Africa, the Middle East, and South and Central America.
A remerging Russia is wreaking havoc across Europe and threatens several key allies.
Congress must understand the threats we have from these two near-peer rivals and adjust our defense policy accordingly.
We also must continue our efforts to defeat terrorists anywhere they threaten us.
I believe this bill strikes the right balance between countering the terrorist threats that still exist, while deterring China and Russia.
This NDAA represents a truly bipartisan bill, reflecting the input of every Member of our Committee.
The totality of this legislation should garner overwhelming bipartisan support.
As you all consider which amendments to make in order, I have one request:
Focus on amendments that advance the security of our nation and the needs of our servicemembers.
Thank you again for the opportunity to be here.
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