The mess that is the appropriations process in Congress right now has already been a topic of conversation here at NoH. Bill Matthews has a nice summary of the situation and what it means in the Oct. 11 edition of Defense News. I flag this piece for you because Travis makes an all-star appearance:
The same may be true if Republicans could win control of one or both houses of Congress. They may decide not to let legislation that the Democrats drafted pass this year because they will be in a position to rewrite in when the next Congress begins work in January, said Travis Sharp, a defense budget analyst at the Center for a New American Security.
In that case, the current continuing resolution would likely be extended.
Even if the Democrats retain control of the House and Senate, the Republicans have little incentive to yield to them on the defense bills.
“Presidential campaigning for 2012 begins in November, literally as soon as midterm elections are over,” Sharp said.
Republicans will be looking for issues they can use in the campaign, among them, maintaining the ban on gays in the military and blocking immigration reform.
Perhaps the most optimistic outcome would be “a more closely divided House and Senate,” Sharp said. “The impact for defense legislation is that you would see much cleaner authorization and appropriations bills.”
The reason: Members in both houses generally support the military and are generous about spending money on it. But the defense bills attract controversial and not necessarily germane amendments because the bills are considered “must pass” legislation. So measures that can’t pass on their own sometimes slip through as amendments to defense bills.
With more equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans, particularly in the Senate, there would be less chance of getting enough votes to pass controversial amendments, so fewer would be attached to the defense bills, Sharp said.