Select Comparisons Between House and Senate FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Bills

Topline Funding

  Senate approved House approved
Total funding $750.0 billion $733.0 billion
Overseas Contingency Operations funding $75.9 billion $69.0 billion

 (Note: $738 billion is the new total in the Pelosi-Mnuchin budget agreement)

 

Nuclear and Related Weapons Programs and Treaties

LOW-YIELD NUCLEAR WARHEAD FOR SUBMARINES

House: Prohibits funds for the deployment of W76-2 low-yield warhead for submarines and cuts entire $19.6 million DoD request and $10 million NNSA request for the program. 

Senate: Funds the program

 

NEW START TREATY

House: Supports extending the New START Treaty and prohibits use of funds to withdraw from New START unless Russia is in material breach of the treaty, requires Director of National Intelligence, Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense reports detailing the consequences of the Treaty’s lapse and impact on US nuclear modernization plan, and requires Presidential certification regarding the future of the Treaty before its potential expiration.

Senate: No similar provision

 

GROUND-BASED STRATEGIC DETERRENT (GBSD – ICBM REPLACEMENT)

House: $489.4 million, a reduction of $103 million from request

Senate: $592.4 million, an increase of $22 million from request

 

CONVENTIONAL INTERMEDIATE-RANGE NUCLEAR MISSILES

House: Prohibits funding for missiles noncompliant with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty until the Secretary of Defense meets certain conditions, and cuts entire $96 million Pentagon request for research and development on three INF-range missiles.

Senate: No similar provision

 

SEA-LAUNCHED CRUISE MISSILE

House: Funds the Pentagon request of $5 million but eliminates the NNSA request of $5.6 million. Requires report on operational and budget impacts. 

Senate: Provides a $5 million increase above the Pentagon request level, funds at the NNSA request level, and establishes of a formal DoD program of record.

 

DEPLOYED ICBMS

House: No similar provision

Senate: Bars reducing responsiveness, alert level or quantity of deployed U.S. intercontinental ballistic missiles to fewer than 400. (Section 1664)

 

ICBM W78 WARHEAD 

House: Requires the National Nuclear Security Administrator to conduct an analysis of alternatives with respect to replacing the ICBM W78 warhead, limits funds until the analysis of alternatives is submitted and requires an independent study of the W78 replacement. Also reduces by $59 million the NNSA request for the W87-1 (W78 replacement).

Senate: Fully funds W87-1 ($112 million)

 

PRODUCTION OF PLUTONIUM PITS

House: Repeals the requirement for the Department of Energy to demonstrate the capability to produce plutonium pits at a rate sufficient to produce 80 pits per year by 2027, and instead sets a goal of 30 pits per year. Also cuts $241.2 million from the NNSA request of $712.4 million to expand pit production beyond 30 pits.

Senate: Extends the deadline for the Department of Energy to produce 80 plutonium pits per year from 2027 to 2030. Fully funds the NNSA request for plutonium sustainment.

 

OPEN SKIES TREATY

House: Reaffirms Congress’s commitment to the Open Skies Treaty, prohibits the use of DoD funds to suspend, terminate, or withdraw from Open Skies unless “certain certification requirements are made,” and updates reporting requirements on flights conducted under Open Skies.

Senate: No similar provision

 

NO FIRST USE OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS

House: Requires an independent study on the policy of no-first-use of nuclear weapons.

Senate: No similar provision

 

STUDIES ON COST OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS PROGRAMS

House: Requires studies regarding potential cost savings with respect to the nuclear security enterprise and force structure by the Comptroller General, Federally funded research and development centers, a nongovernmental think tank and the Congressional Budget Office.

Senate: No similar provision

 

STUDY OF NON-STRATEGIC (TACTICAL) NUCLEAR WEAPONS

House: No similar provision

Senate: Requires a report describing Russia’s deployed non-strategic nuclear weapons, Russia’s nuclear weapons in development that would not be covered by the New START if deployed, Russia’s non-deployed strategic weapons, China’s nuclear modernization program and the implications thereof on the New START central limits (Section 1243).

 

LOW-ENRICHED URANIUM FOR NAVAL REACTORS

House: Adds $20 million to the Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation budget to conduct research and development on low-enriched uranium for naval reactors.

Senate: Prohibits the obligation or expenditure of any funds at the NNSA to conduct research and development of an advanced naval nuclear fuel system based on low-enriched uranium unless the Secretary of Defense, Secretary of Energy, and Secretary of the Navy submit certain certifications (Section 3115).

 

ACCELERATING DISMANTLEMENT OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS

House: Terminates the prohibition on accelerating nuclear weapon dismantlement and the maximum funds designated to carry out dismantlement and disposition activities. 

Senate: No similar provision

  

Missile Defense Provisions

TESTING GROUND-BASED MIDCOURSE DEFENSE SYSTEM

House: Revises the testing requirement for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense System to include the use of threat-representative countermeasures.

Senate: No similar provision

 

SPACE-BASED MISSILE DEFENSE

House: Prohibits development of any missile defense capability that could only be deployed in space and removes a Congressionally-directed deadline for a space missile defense test bed.

Senate: No similar provision

 

GROUND-BASED MID-COURSE MISSILE DEFENSE

House: $960 million, a reduction of $196 million from the request

Senate: $1.2 billion, the requested amount

 

NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES STUDY OF MISSILE DEFENSES

House: Requires a National Academy of Sciences independent study on the impacts of missile defense development and deployment.

Senate: No similar provision

 

SPACE FORCE

House: Establishes U.S. Space Force within the U.S. Air Force.

Senate: Establishes U.S. Space Force within the U.S. Air Force.

 

SPACE-BASED SENSOR PROGRAM

House: $108 million; directs the Missile Defense Agency to continue work on a sensor payload for tracking ballistic and hypersonic threats from space.

Senate: $108 million; encourages acceleration of the program (Section 1673).

 

PARTICLE BEAM MISSILE DEFENSE PROGRAM

House: Zero, a reduction of $34 million from the request

Senate: Zero, a reduction of $34 million from the request

 

 

Foreign Policy, War and Military Intervention Provisions

MILITARY FORCE AGAINST IRAN

House: Prohibits unauthorized military force in or against Iran.

Senate: No similar provision, but voted for Udall (D-NM)-Kaine (D-VA)-Merkley (D-OR) amendment 50-40, not meeting the 60 vote threshold for passage, to block war with Iran without prior congressional authorization.

 

POLICY TOWARD NORTH KOREA

House: Urges the U.S. to pursue a sustained and credible diplomatic process to achieve the denuclearization of North Korea and an end to the 69-year-long Korean War.

Senate: No similar provision

 

VERIFICATION OF NORTH KOREA’S DENUCLEARIZATION

House: Authorizes $10 million to develop and prepare a monitoring and verification program related to the phased denuclearization of North Korea, in coordination with relevant international partners and organizations.

Senate: No similar provision

 

U.S. TROOPS IN SOUTH KOREA

House: Bars reducing U.S. forces in South Korea below 28,500 unless the Secretary of Defense certifies that such a reduction is in the national security interest of the U.S. and will not significantly undermine the security of the U.S. allies in the region.

Senate: Bars reducing the number of U.S. forces in South Korea below 28,500 without prior Secretary of Defense certification.

 

AUTHORIZATION TO USE MILITARY FORCE (AUMF)

House: Repeals the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.

Senate: No similar provision

 

ASSISTANCE TO SAUDI MILITARY OPERATIONS

House: Prohibits support to and participation in the Saudi-led coalition’s military operations against the Houthis in Yemen.

Senate: No similar provision

 

REPORT ON OVERSEAS MILITARY OPERATIONS

House: Requires a report on financial costs and national security benefits for overseas military operations, including permanent military installations and bases. 

Senate: No similar provision

 

U.S. TROOPS IN EUROPE

House: No similar provision

Senate: Bars for one year the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Europe if the U.S. withdraws from NATO (Section 1232)

 

F-35 FIGHTERS TO TURKEY

House: Prohibits the transfer of an F-35 aircraft to Turkey unless they stop acquisition of the Russian S-400 air defense system.

Senate: Prohibits the transfer of F-35 fighters to Turkey if that country accepts the Russian S-400 air and missile defense system (Section 1236)

 

AFGHANISTAN SECURITY FORCES 

House: $4.5 billion

Senate: $4.8 billion

 

UKRAINE SECURITY ASSISTANCE INITIATIVE

House: $250 million

Senate: $300 million

 

Governmental Agencies and Reports

OPERATIONAL TEST AND EVALUATION REPORT

House: Preserves the requirement for the Pentagon Director of Operational Test and Evaluation to produce a public annual report.

Senate: No similar provision

 

JASON SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY GROUP

House: Extends the congressional notification period to 180 days if the Secretary of Defense chooses to terminate its contract with the JASON scientific advisory group and requires that the Secretary receive congressional approval. The amendment also clarifies that JASON provides scientific and technical advice to multiple federal agencies, including the Department of Defense.

Senate: No similar provision

 

STUDY OF NUCLEAR VERIFICATION, DETECTION AND MONITORING

House: Requires the National Academies of Sciences to conduct an independent review of plans and capabilities for nuclear verification, detection, and monitoring of nuclear weapons and fissile material.

Senate: No similar provision

 

AUDITS

House: Requires an annual audit to help identify waste in DoD and requires DoD to submit a plan for achieving an unmodified audit opinion within five years. Requires an annual report ranking each of the military departments and Defense Agencies in order of how advanced they are in achieving unmodified audit opinions. 

Senate: No similar provision

 

Selected Other Provisions

MILITARY PAY RAISE

House: 3.1%

Senate: 3.1%