U.S. House Passes Defense Authorization Bill, Includes Pay Raise for U.S. Servicemembers & Spanberger’s Provisions to Crack Down on Cartels, Reform Security Classification System

The Bipartisan Legislation Includes a More Than 5 Percent Pay Raise for U.S. Servicemembers & Two Spanberger-Led Provisions to Support National Security Priorities

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger today voted with a bipartisan majority of the U.S. House of Representatives to authorize U.S. Department of Defense funding levels, increase troop pay, and help set the nation’s defense priorities.

The House-passed fiscal year 2024 (FY24) National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes a 5.2 percent pay increase for U.S. servicemembers. Additionally, the bill includes two Spanberger-led provisions to crack down on dangerous fentanyl trafficking by transnational criminal organizations and modernize the United States’ security classification system.

“Providing our servicemembers with the support they need to defend their fellow Americans is a fundamental component to a smart, strong national security strategy. I was proud to vote with a bipartisan majority of my colleagues to pass a well-deserved pay raise for those who put on the uniform and their families,” said Spanberger. “As a former federal law enforcement officer and CIA case officer who worked narcotics cases and tracked cartels, I understand the threats facing our communities. I’m proud that the FY2024 NDAA includes my bipartisan bill to get our intelligence community more involved in combatting the flow of fentanyl across our southern border — because I know these professionals can be vital partners in disrupting trafficking operations. This defense legislation also includes my bipartisan bill to reform our outdated classification system to protect classified information and strengthen our national security. I look forward to the President providing our troops with the resources they deserve and signing these efforts into law.”

Specifically, the Spanberger-led provisions in the bipartisan defense bill include:

  • Cracking down on the Sinaloa & Jalisco Cartels. The NDAA sent to the President’s desk includes a bipartisan bill — which Spanberger introduced — requiring the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to prepare an intelligence assessment of the Sinaloa and Jalisco Cartels. The two Mexico-based transnational criminal organizations are responsible for producing and distributing the majority of synthetic drugs trafficked into the United States from Mexico. Specifically, the required assessment would examine the production methods, suppliers, cross-border trafficking routes, leadership, and additional operations of the two cartels.
  • Reform the Security Classification System. The bipartisan defense legislation includes Spanberger’s bipartisan Sensible Classification Act — which Spanberger introduced earlier this year. Specifically, the legislation would codify classification authority, streamline the processes for declassification, direct training focused on sensible classification, invest in new technology to modernize the classification system, and direct a review regarding the necessity of existing security clearances to identify potential areas for additional reforms.

The FY2024 NDAA is expected to be signed into law by President Joe Biden.

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