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Montana politics, elections and legislative news

Tester, Daines Cheer Passage Of Defense Authorization Act

U.S. Capitol
flickr user Tim Evanson (CC-BY-SA-2)
U.S. Capitol

Both of Montana’s senators praised the Senate's passage of the National Defense Authorization Act today. Both were among the 85 senators voting for the bill.

In separate press releases, Montana’s senators cheered its funding for Malmstrom Air Force Base to replace Vietnam-era Huey helicopters with more modern Blackhawk helicopters. But beyond that, they chose to highlight different aspects of the military spending bill.

Republican Steve Daines said, "Authorizing the funding our military needs is more important now than ever as we witness radical Islam continue to take root around the world, and in our backyards,” unquote.

Democrat Jon Tester said, "The Senate took an important step to ensure this nation does right by the folks who serve. It … provides pay raises for our troops, [and] supports military families and retirees."

Tester also praised funding to continue Defense Department medical research. Daines highlighted help for veterans who may have been erroneously given a less than honorable discharge due to negative behavior resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury.

Eric Whitney is NPR's Mountain West/Great Plains Bureau Chief, and was the former news director for Montana Public Radio.
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