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House Approves 2010 Defense Appropriations Act

Yesterday the House voted to approve the 2010 Defense Appropriations bill. The Senate must do the same and they are expected to do so within the next week. To make things easier for them the House bill contained an extension of the continuing resolution for the Defense Department.

The Senate version should be identical to that approved by the House and full details will be available once the bill is properly passed and signed by President Obama. The House bill includes the second engine for the F-35 JSF, more C-17 aircraft and some money to use the leftover assets of the VH-71 program. The President had threatened to veto the bill over the second JSF engine but that will most likely not happen.

The House avoided some of the big issues by not adding the total debt limit increase but one that allows six weeks of spending in order to deal with the problem next year. They also passed temporary extensions of some laws so that again they may be dealt with next year rather then now. This minimized the fights over the legislation and criticism that the critical defense bill was being hijacked.

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