Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement on the letter from Defense Secretary James Mattis detailing the impacts of a continuing resolution on our Armed Forces:
“The letter from Secretary Mattis adds to years of warnings about the detrimental effects of funding our military with repeated continuing resolutions. Secretary Mattis said that the impacts of a continuing resolution are felt immediately by our military and will grow exponentially over time. In the next three months, the Navy will delay ship inductions and reduce flying hours, the Army will postpone maintenance, and the Air Force will limit execution of infrastructure funding. All services will delay training and curtail recruitment—leaving, according to Secretary Mattis, ‘critical gaps in the workforce skill set.’
“A continuing resolution prevents the military from reprogramming funding to meet emerging needs. It prohibits the start of new programs to modernize for future threats. And it locks the Department of Defense into previous funding levels, mandating a level of spending that is $89 billion less than the fiscal year 2018 funding level passed unanimously in the Senate Armed Services Committee bipartisan markup of the National Defense Authorization Act.
“Congress’s vote to begin the year on yet another continuing resolution is inexcusable. It says that we are willing to accept the status quo for our military—where more service members are dying in training than on the battlefield. We must not repeat this mistake in December.”