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Analysis of Chairman Obey’s Supplemental Appropriations Bill May 5, 2009

Posted by Stephen Abott in Analysis, News.
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Yesterday, Chairman Obey of the House Appropriations Committee released his modifications to President Obama’s war supplemental request. In total, he is increasing the president’s $83.4 billion request by $9.3 billion. The $96.7 billion bill includes $78.4 billion for DOD, $4.7 billion more than the White House’s request. He is also adding $3 billion to Obama’s State and Foreign Affairs request of $7.1 billion. The bill will likely be marked up on Thursday and Congress hopes to pass it by Memorial Day. Below is a description of the major changes that the House democrats made to the president’s request.

Defense:

MRAP: Obey added $2.1 billion to the president’s request of $2.7 billion for Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicles (MRAP).

JIEDDO: The Chairman decreased the president’s Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defense Fund request by approximately $0.2 billion – leaving it at $1.3 billion.

Other Military Hardware: The Democrats included sufficient funds for four additional F-22 aircraft, as requested by the president. They also included $2.2 billion for new C-17s and decommissioning of older C-5 aircraft.

Afghanistan and Pakistan: Obey included the $0.4 billion the administration requested for Pakistani counterinsurgency funds. However, they will be sent through the State Department but administered by the Pentagon. The Chairman also included the $3.6 billion the administration requested for the training and equipping of the Afghan Security Forces. He added $80 million to State Department operations in Afghanistan, this is in addition to the $363 million the administration requested.

Military Construction: Added $0.9 billion to the President’s request for military construction. These additional monies will primarily fund the construction of hospitals.

Health Care: Congressman Obey more than doubled the president’s $239 million request for “Wounded Warrior” complexes to $488 million.

State Department/International Affairs:

Pakistan: Obey increased the total appropriation to $2.3 billion. This includes a more than doubling Obama’s request for economic Assistance to Pakistan (from $429.5 to $997 million), these additional monies will be moved from Obama’s request for FY2010 to the previous year. The bill also increases State Department funding by $90.8 million over the $806.2 requested by Obama, for the construction of a new embassy in Islamabad.  Further, the Chairman’s Mark designates the Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability Fund ($400 million) as core to the State Department’s budget and funds the program through the Function 150 International Affairs account.

Afghanistan: Assistance to Afghanistan’s to support its economy, rule of law, and governance was increased by $141 million, to $980 million. Additionally, Obey increased support to State Department diplomatic operations by $86 million over the president’s request of $450 million.

Iraq: The Chairman increased funding for State and Foreign Affairs activities in Iraq by $230 million over the president’s request for $738 million.

Greater Middle East: Along with assistance to the West Bank and Gaza, largely in line with administration requests, Congressman Obey added new security assistance and economic support funds to Jordan ($250 million) and Egypt (additional $310 million). He also added new security assistance funding for Israel ($555 million) and decreased such funding to Lebanon (decreasing to $74 million from the $98.4 million request).

Refugee Assistance: Obey increased refugee assistance funding by $50 million, from the administration’s request of $293 million.

HIV/AIDS: The Chairman funded the global fight against AIDS and other diseases with $100 million. The president’s request had no such item.

Food Assistance: Obey increased Obama’s $0.3 billion request for international food assistance (PL 480) by $0.2 billion.

Other: Congressman Obey decreased Obama’s request for $448 million to “address the impact of the global financial crisis in developing countries” by $148 million.

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Comments»

1. Obama: “Soft” Earmarks are OK « Cynical Synapse - June 26, 2009

[…] here’s the path this year’s supplemental has taken. The House added $9.3 billion to the President’s request. Although military-related, the adds intend to keep constituents […]


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