senate

afghan-soldier-patrol

CAPITOL HILL: Afghanistan won’t go downhill like Iraq, the next Marine Corps Commandant told the Senate Armed Services Committee, because the US isn’t withdrawing in the same precipitous way. In fact, we’re not withdrawing, just transitioning. “I was one of the thousands of Marines who served in the Anbar province,” now fallen to the Islamic… Keep reading →

Atlas V launches NROL39

WASHINGTON: It is shaping up as one of the great corporate brawls in the aerospace world: snappy and feisty and hungry newcomer, SpaceX, versus the titan of heavy launch, the near-perfect expression of big corporatism, the Boeing-Lockheed Martin United Launch Alliance. The focus of their competition is obscure to most Americans: the purchase by the… Keep reading →

Reaping the Benefits of a Global Defense Industry

Greg Sanders CSIS photo

  As the Defense Department’s budget goes down, the number of contracts awarded without competitive bids is going up. The share of contracts awarded without competition has risen from 39 percent in 2009 to 42 percent in 2012, according to a report I co-authored with Jesse Ellman and Rhys McCormick on DoD Contracting Trends. The news for… Keep reading →

Army MLRS rocket artillery firing in Korea exercise

[UPDATED with Army & Senate responses] WASHINGTON: After convening in Washington for briefings on the Army budget and how to implement it, the state-level commanders of the National Guard have instead launched a new offensive against the Army plan to cut their forces, flooding Capitol Hill with letters and PowerPoint slides (embedded below). Their immediate goal:… Keep reading →

marionblakeyc17farnborough

Just hours before the Senate is set to vote on the last-ditch budget deal, the head of the powerful Aerospace Industries Association complimented Congress for coming to its senses – but, said Marion Blakey, this had better be just the beginning. “I personally do not believe the American public likes to have the wool pulled… Keep reading →

SenLindseyGraham

WASHINGTON: In a broad exercise of the senatorial privilege of temporarily stopping a nomination, known as a “hold,” Sen. Lindsey Graham announced this morning that he will not allow any Obama administration nominations to proceed.until he is told the names of those he calls the “Benghazi survivors.” RT @GrahamBlog: Where are the #Benghazi survivors? I’m… Keep reading →

Odierno Attends Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing

CAPITOL HILL: President Obama’s nominee to be Navy Undersecretary, Jo Ann Rooney, faced a stormy reception this morning, getting a bipartisan hammering by Senators John McCain and Kirsten Gillibrand. In her formal written responses to SASC’s pre-hearing questions, Rooney had demurred on whether the Navy Department could meet the statutory deadline of September 2014 to… Keep reading →

Coffins at Dover Air Force Base

UPDATED: Senate Clears Stopgap Death Benefits Bill By Unanimous Consent at 12:48 PM Oct. 10. WASHINGTON: Every member of Congress should hang his or her head in shame this afternoon. The Fisher House Foundation has stepped into the breach of the federal government shutdown and agreed to pay the families of Americans who die fighting… Keep reading →

sen. kelly ayotte

CAPITOL HILL: While the federal government remains supine and Congress fails to pass appropriations bills, at least one lawmaker is engaged in a classic use of senatorial privilege: placing a hold on the nomination of a senior administration official. Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who has made clear her unease with what appears to be the Air… Keep reading →

Fireworks over the US Capitol Dome in Washington, DC.

CAPITOL HILL: Syria and sequestration dominated today’s Senate Appropriations Committee’s mark-up of the $594 billion defense spending bill for fiscal year 2014, but there was little actual progress on either. Appropriators are historically the most hard-nosed legislators; they’re the committees that have to match congressional rhetoric with actual money. But today, the appropriators approved a… Keep reading →

dempseyandwinnefeld

CAPITOL HILL: The next Pentagon budget will almost certainly include increased spending for the Navy, Marines, and Air Force to boost their presence and operations in the Asia-Pacific region. That’s because the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that the Pentagon’s strategic review found we… Keep reading →

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