Senate votes to push defense bill, backs base closings

The Senate voted unanimously this morning to move ahead with the defense authorization bill, as several senators put aside objections to language in the bill allowing for further military base closures.

Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., had considered mounting an effort to prevent the Senate from ending debate on the bill. Ultimately, though, the Republican leader pulled back, fearing his efforts would sink the defense bill and bring to a close the newfound era of bipartisanship before it begins its fourth full week.

Lott's decision, which came after a meeting with Senate Republicans early today, was an indication of continuing congressional unity.

At issue was a vote on a cloture motion Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., filed last week to halt debate on the defense authorization measure. Daschle filed the procedural motion after Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., refused to back off a threat to add a comprehensive energy production measure to the defense bill. Democrats need 60 votes to limit debate on the defense bill and sidestep Inhofe's energy amendment.

Lott then signaled he might try to block the cloture motion by rallying Republicans who support the energy bill and Republicans who oppose a provision in the defense bill that allows for another round of base closings.

Several military outposts in Mississippi, including Columbus Air Force Base, are expected to be in the next round of base closures.

"Columbus is absolutely going to be on anybody's list when it comes to base closings," said one source familiar with the issue.

Last week, Lott and more than two-dozen other Republicans tried to strip the base closing provision from the defense bill. However, the Senate voted, 53-47, to protect the measure.

Geoff Earle contributed to this report.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.