Trump Signs Bill Named After McCain, But Doesn't Mention Senator Once

Saul Bowman
August 14, 2018

The act, titled the John McCain National Defense Authorization Act, sets the budget and funding priorities for the Department of Defense for the 2019 fiscal year. And just hours after signing the military spending bill Monday, he did the same thing at a fundraiser in upstate NY.

A new act signed by US President Donald Trump leaves the technologies of Huawei and ZTE largely banned from use by the US government and government contractors.

The bill will boost military pay by 2.6 percent, the biggest hike in nine years.

The bill weakens a bid to clamp down on Chinese telecom company ZTE.

In response to the bill, Huawei said in a statement to Reuters, "Huawei supports the U.S. government's goals for better security, but this random addition to the NDAA is ineffective, misguided, and unconstitutional". As a candidate, Trump said he did not like McCain because the senator, a Navy pilot during the war in Vietnam, was shot down and captured, held for more than five years in a North Vietnamese prison and repeatedly tortured.

The president also said the measure will help to create the new U.S. Space Force, which he said is necessary to counter military moves by China and others in orbit. "After years of devastating cuts, we're now rebuilding our military like we never have before".

Instead, the NDAA strengthens the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which determines whether proposed foreign investments threaten national security.

The measure authorizes $500 million for the co-development and co-production of missile defense systems with Israel. The bill authorizes $716 billion in funding.

In May, a West Wing aide dismissed McCain's negative opinion on Trump's Central Intelligence Agency nominee during a closed-door meeting by saying of the senator that "he's dying anyway".

"It does nothing to identify real security risks or improve supply chain security, and will only serve to stifle innovation while increasing internet costs for U.S. consumers and businesses", Huawei said.

There had been concerns Trump might be tempted to slash the number of US soldiers on the peninsula as a cost-saving measure, but the bill prevents that.

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