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House Passes Bill Making U.S. Space Force the Sixth Branch of Military

House Passes Bill Making U.S. Space Force the Sixth Branch of Military

In a compromise with the Democrats, paid parental leave is included in defense spending bill.

It appears that congressional leaders and the White House have struck a bipartisan deal that would allow the Defense Department to establish a U.S. Space Force as a separate military branch.

According to a draft of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Agreement, also known as the 2020 U.S. defense budget, the Pentagon will redesignate the U.S. Air Force’s Space Command the U.S. Space Force, spinning it off from an arm of the Air Force into a separate service.

The service will be headed by a Chief of Space Operations, similar to how the U.S. Navy is headed by a Chief of Naval Operations and consist of “the space forces and such assets as may be organic therein.” That’s pretty ambiguous language but probably means most of the Air Force’s space assets, from satellite launching facilities like Vandenberg Air Force Base in California to spacecraft ground control bases like Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado.

It’ll also include america’s network of GPS satellites, the X-37B spaceplane, and other military space assets. The Space Force will also likely strip away a smaller number of assets and personnel from the U.S. Army and Navy.

The move is a rare compromise between the Republicans and Democrats, who obtained the votes to proceed with paid family leave for federal workers.

The agreement would give 2.1 million non-military federal workers 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a newborn or adopted child or to care for a family member, according to sources familiar with the details of the discussions. If passed, the bill would the become first time the federal government has guaranteed civilian employees access to paid parental leave.

…The measure was negotiated as part of the National Defense Authorization Act, an annual bill that sets defense priorities. It was included in the version of the defense bill that passed the House, but its fate remained uncertain when negotiations with reluctant Republicans began in the Senate. After more than three months of negotiations, it was one of the last issues to be dealt with. The NDAA still must pass both houses of Congress before it reaches the president’s desk.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) passed in a 377-48 vote, a comfortable margin that perhaps signals the Democrats’ desire to distance themselves from Impeachment Theater.

The compromise bill picked up Republican support that was absent when the House passed its original version of the defense legislation in July, allowing the chamber to send the $738 billion bill to the Senate.

“This was not an easy process,” House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) said ahead of the vote. “We have a divided government. We have a Republican president, a Republican Senate and Democratic House who do not agree on a lot of issues, and those are the issues that tend to get focused on. But what this conference report reflects for the most part is that we do agree on a lot.”

Rep. Mac Thornberry (Texas), the top Republican on the committee who voted against the House version in July, added that the final bill is “good for the troops, and it is good for national security, and when it comes to a defense authorization bill, that’s all that really matters.”

The measure is expected to pass the Senate easily, and President Donald Trump is eager to use his pen:

For those interested, here is an excellent lecture on the need for Space Force by Steven L. Kwast, a retired Air Force general and former commander of the Air Education and Training Command at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph.

I sense that this is the first of many compromises to come, as Democrats look for a way to make their presence relevant to constituents who are not suffering from Trump Derangement Syndrome.


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More bureaucracy.

    NotCoach in reply to bw222. | December 12, 2019 at 11:17 am

    Exactly. Is this really necessary? Sometimes I wonder if we needed to create an Air Force. What is it that the Air Force does that could not be accomplished within the other branches? After all every branch, including the Coast Guard, has pilots and aircrafts.

    I’ll watch the video during my lunch break and see how convincing the argument is.

      mailman in reply to NotCoach. | December 12, 2019 at 11:24 am

      For the simple reason that the Army would be doing its own thing…the Navy its own thing…the MAHREEEEENS their own thing…the guys down the back of the car pool their own thing and so on and so on and so on.

      At least having one branch responsible for things with propellers means that pissing money against a brick wall can be achieved nice and efficient like 😉

What the actual fuck does paid parental leave have to do with Space Force?!?

On the other hand, wasn’t this something pushed heavily Ivanka Trump? When did Democrats become supporters of Trumps children? hahahaha

What? As if federal workers do not already enjoy benefits far in excess of private sector workers in terms of pay scale, fringe benefits, secure employment. Now additional benefits to further distance the federal workforce from the private sector? Not a healthy development. And why? why give these democrats anything? Let them oppose a popular measure and suffer the political consequences.

    alaskabob in reply to Concise. | December 12, 2019 at 12:49 pm

    Family Leave was passed initially on the promise of never being paid leave. Simpson Mizzoli was to be a one time amnesty. It takes time but the Dems get their way….the long game. It’s a house of cards now anyway…the truly long game is communism and either by law or financial collapse the Dems are moving the U.S. toward that. So everyday must be a battle to not only stop that but get back territory lost.

Great. Our somewhat unproductive overpaid overprotected federal work force … advances further in that direction.

If this becomes another branch of the military, what future progressive tries to suck away a lot of the money for national defense to redirect to “universal defense”.

I don’t dislike the space force but it seems strange to call it military and add it to the military’s budget. The bloated military budget headlines that scream for cuts write themselves for all of those leftist cronies in journalism.

“This was not an easy process”

Oh, hogwash.

This is Congress—anything which involves spending money is easy.

If Congress was in charge of the vending machines in Washington, just imagine how much a cup of coffee would cost.

Now the Universe is our Oyster… not just the world.

OleDirtyBarrister | December 12, 2019 at 1:40 pm

Establishing the Space Force alone is not the right step forward, but it is necessary for now to be able to have standing in negotiations. What is really needed is hard work on new treaties to update and expand the Outer Space Treaty of 1967. That treaty prohibited nukes from being kept in space and launched to earth.

The obvious question is whether anyone can trust Russia, China, and others to abide by an expanded treaty that prohibits making space another dimension of the battlefield. And, it may be too late to get other nations to agree and participate.

The Friendly Grizzly | December 12, 2019 at 3:28 pm

New uniforms, separate fleet of vehicles, new supply chain, new song(!), new sections of office space in the Pentagon, more inter-service rivaly.

All for vanity.

In fact, paid leave is a tacit admission that most federal bureaucrats are so underworked that they can take off three months at a time and nobody will miss them.

We’re going to need a SEVENTH branch of the military, if the disease of obama continues to spread: it’ll be a force used to impose martial law.

buckeyeminuteman | December 12, 2019 at 5:12 pm

More bases, more personnelists, more supply chains, more uniforms, more commissaries, more money, etc, etc, etc. I don’t see this as necessary just yet. An excuse to spend even more money.

A force in space is an absolute necessity if you wish to maintain freedom and liberty.

Treaties do not work. Our enemies will put arms in space. We better have more and better and be first with the most.

The only branch equipped to deal with the battleground of space is the Air Force. There is no air in space. Too protective of the existing force, a separate command is required. We will need the space force more than any other forces in the future, and it will be too late after our enemies have control of space. It has to be established now.

Kudos to the president and others that recognize the challenges of this century.

Space Force, great idea. We can send people into space, 2 at a time, for $50 million each, on the venerable Soyuz platform.

See you on Mars.