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Arrington Applauds House Passage of NDAA, Including Four of His Amendments

Washington, D.C. – Today, Chairman Jodey Arrington (TX-19) issued the following statement after House passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA): 

“The first and most important job of the federal government is to protect our citizens, defend our freedom, and provide for a common defense. That’s why I was proud to support this legislation, which ensures our troops have the resources and tools they need to safely and effectively do their jobs and protect the American people,” said Arrington. “Furthermore, it fully funds Dyess Air Force Base, supports the development of the B-21, and ensures the brave airmen who serve at Dyess have everything they need to deter our enemies and defend our allies.”

Arrington concluded, “This legislation also includes provisions to honor the life of Private Caleb Smither, help hold Army contract personnel accountable, and ensure the Army is abiding by safety protocols – referred to as the “Smitty Check” – so tragedies like the one that claimed Caleb’s life don’t happen again.”

Among other provisions, the House-passed NDAA includes:

  • A 19.5% pay raise for junior servicemembers and 4.5% pay raise for all other servicemembers;
  • Over $30 million for military construction projects at Dyess Air Force Base to support the B-21 beddown; and
  • Provisions to ban critical race theory in the military and gut DEI at the Department of Defense (DoD).

This year’s NDAA also incorporates four of Arrington’s amendments, including two honoring 19-year-old Lubbock native Private Second Class Caleb “Smitty” Smitherwho died on active duty at Fort Bragg, North Carolina

  1. To direct the Army to report to Congress on the implementation and enforcement of the “Smitty Check” protocol that was developed in response to Caleb Smither’s death, requiring the Army to thoroughly monitor service members following an injury; 
  2. To require the Department of Defense (DoD) to disclose on medical records whether a service member received care from a DoD doctor or a civilian doctor;
  3. To require DoD to brief Congress on attempted base breaches since 2021; and

o In May, two Jordanian nationals illegally in the country attempted to breach Marine Corps Base Quantico. 

o Additionally, in May, Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas was breached twice, first by a 17-year-old Mexican National and then by a suspected human trafficker. 

  1. To bar any DoD funds from being used to operate aircraft to transport Palestinian refugees to the United States.