WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton released statements with their reactions to the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The U.S. Senate passed the annual defense bill which authorizes $770 billion in funding for the Defense Department 89-10 on Wednesday.

Boozman voted to support the Fiscal Year 2022 NDAA, calling the legislation critical for our national security.

“This bill prioritizes our nation’s defense and our commitment to servicemembers and their families,” Boozman said. “Increasing defense spending above the president’s request will ensure our military maintains the readiness levels achieved under President Trump, modernize the military to preserve our advantage over our adversaries and provide the resources required to give our servicemembers and their families the quality of life they deserve.”

While Cotton expressed his initial worries about where the bill might have been headed, he said he was pleased with the final result of the bill.

“Democrats tried to use this defense bill to draft America’s daughters and force their radical social ideologies onto our troops,” Cotton said. “Thankfully, they failed, and this year’s defense bill largely does what it should: support and strengthen our troops.”

Both Senators said they were happy with that specific edit to the bill.

“I’m also pleased the final version of this bill protects servicemembers’ Second Amendment rights and does not force women to sign up for the draft, in addition to investing in Arkansas’s strong defense industries,” Boozman remarked.

Cotton said the bill was a step in the right direction in the effort to support U.S. troops. “By increasing our defense budget, fully funding our nuclear weapons, giving the troops a raise, and investing substantially in our Navy, this bill is an important step to providing our military with the resources it needs to protect the United States,” the senator said.