The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for FY2019 today moved closer to final passage, thanks to actions in both House and the Senate.

The House was busy working on the NDAA this week, culminating in a vote to pass its version of the spending bill earlier today.

On a voice vote yesterday, the House closed the gap on a big difference between Senate and House versions of the NDAA by accepting an amendment from Rep. Ruben Gallego, D-Ariz., that would bar government funding to procure goods or services from the Chinese telecommunications companies ZTE and Huawei, or to extend or renew a contract with them. This amendment had previously been a sticking point between the two bills–with some Hill staffers warning the amendment could have unintended consequences. The ban continues to pit Congress against the White House, which has been lobbying against the amendment on the Hill for the past few weeks.

The House also voted yesterday by unanimous consent to form a conference committee to work with the Senate to unify their two bills. The House named 31 bipartisan members from the Armed Services Committee to the conference. Additionally, the House named members from the Energy and Commerce, Financial Services, and Foreign Affairs Committees to the conference committee to help negotiate specific provisions in the NDAA.

On the other side of the Capitol, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved the Department of Defense appropriations bill today. Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., noted that the bill received strong bipartisan support.

The Senate has yet to vote to form a conference committee for the NDAA.

The following members of the House Armed Services Committee were named to serve on the House-Senate Conference Committee:

  • Chairman Mac Thornberry, R-Texas
  • Ranking Member Adam Smith, D-Wash.
  • Rob Bishop, R-Utah
  • Don Bacon, R-Neb.
  • Jim Banks, R-Ind.
  • Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam
  • Bradley Byrne, R-La.
  • Mike Coffman, R-Colo.
  • Mike Conaway, R-Texas
  • Paul Cook, R-Calif.
  • Jim Cooper, D-Tenn.
  • Joe Courtney, D-Conn.
  • Susan Davis, D-Calif.
  • Tulsi Gabbard, D- Hawaii
  • John Garamendi, D-Calif.
  • Vicky Hartzler, R-Mo.
  • Doug Lamborn, R-Colo.
  • James Langevin, D-R.I.
  • Frank LoBiondo, R-N.J.
  • Stephanie Murphy, D-Fla.
  • Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas
  • Mike Rogers, R-Ala.
  • Austin Scott, R-Ga.
  • Bill Shuster, R-Penn.
  • Jackie Speier, D-Calif.
  • Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y.
  • Niki Tsongas, D-Mass.
  • Mike Turner, R-Ohio
  • Marc Veasey, D-Texas
  • Joe Wilson, R-S.C.
  • Rob Wittman, R-Va.
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Kate Polit
Kate Polit
Kate Polit is MeriTalk's Assistant Copy & Production Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.