House passes $649B defense spending bill.

The strong bipartisan vote was 336-87 and reflected lawmakers' intent…

The strong bipartisan vote was 336-87 and reflected lawmakers’ intent to ensure national security, preserve defense jobs across the nation and avoid deep cuts while the country is at war.

While House Republican leaders slashed billions from all other government agencies, the Defense Department is the only one that will see a double-digit increase in its budget beginning Oct. 1.

Amid negotiations to cut spending and raise the nation’s borrowing limit, the House rejected several amendments to cut the Pentagon budget, including a measure by Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., to halve the bill’s increase in defense spending.

“We are at a time of austerity. We are at a time when the important programs, valid programs, are being cut back,” Frank said.

Source: The Associated Press

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