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Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke Statement on Defense Authorization Bill

Washington, D.C. – Today Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on the passage of H.R. 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012:

“On Thursday, May 26th, I voted in support of H.R. 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012.  My office has been receiving concerns from the community about my recent vote. I voted in favor of this bill in support of my amendment, the Conyers-Clarke Amendment. This Amendment bars funds from being used to deploy, establish, or maintain a presence of Members of the Armed Services or private security contractors on the ground in Libya.  Had this amendment not been adopted, I would have voted against this bill.

“It was my intent to see this amendment all the way through to the Senate.  I am extremely passionate about not starting another war. It is unconscionable for us to deploy our already strained troops into harm’s way again, when many of them have served two, three or more tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is also irresponsible for us to spend more money on another open-ended military conflict.  As a Member of Congress, I cannot take part in another act of aggression further straining the budget we are so desperately working to fix and our troops who have answered above and beyond the call of duty.

“As you may be aware, the vote on this particular bill was to send it to the Senate for consideration. I will consider a “no” vote should the Senate return this bill to the House.”