The US House of Representatives has passed the fiscal year 2013 Department of Defense Appropriations Bill by a vote of 326-90. The bill includes $518 billion in base funding and an additional $88 billion for the war in Afghanistan and other overseas operations. Congressman Jose E. Serrano joined 78 other Democrats and 11 Republicans in voting against the measure. Serrano says he voted against the measure, despite an amendment that reduced funding by $1 billion dollars, because the bill did not sufficiently cut spending for defense and continued funding the war in Afghanistan at a time when other parts of the government are facing severe reductions.
In addition to the successful amendment to reduce the bill by $1 billion, Serrano supported a number of failed amendments that would have further reduced funding in the bill and ended the war in Afghanistan. "We must recognize that in tough times we must weigh our choices carefully," said Serrano. "We cannot stop investing in America while continuing to pursue endless wars overseas."
The bill will now move to the Senate for its consideration, although the President has threatened to veto the bill if its spending level is not reduced.
U.S. Congressman José E. Serrano represents the Sixteenth Congressional District of New York in the Bronx . He is the only Congressman from New York City on the exclusive House Appropriations Committee and serves as Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government.