VA well being care funds, army vaccine rule gum up omnibus talks

“We have now to honor our dedication to veterans, and there is been a 119 p.c enhance in well being care prices, and we can not proceed to take that out of the nondefense discretionary spending,” Home Appropriation Chair Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., mentioned Thursday. “In order that’s the character of the dialog, there isn’t any closing answer but.”

However there’s a hazard for Democrats even when veterans well being care is walled off into a 3rd class: that might guarantee, from their perspective, an inadequate quantity for the remainder of the nondefense funds in the event that they meet the Nationwide Protection Authorization Act goal throughout the president’s total spending ceiling.

An answer to that drawback can be rising the general topline above the Biden request, as Senate Democrats proposed earlier this 12 months. And up to now that’s been a nonstarter for Republicans.

Vaccine mandate

On the similar time, sticky coverage points have but to be labored out. And one which’s cropped up this week with a vengeance is the Protection Division’s mandate for all servicemembers to be totally vaccinated or be discharged.

Quite a lot of prime Republicans, together with McCarthy, sought to incorporate a rider within the NDAA blocking the Pentagon from implementing the vaccine requirement. Nevertheless it doesn’t seem that provision will make it into the authorization invoice, regardless of a last-minute push from a large group of GOP senators led by Rand Paul of Kentucky that he mentioned has 20 supporters.

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