CMR E-Notes: Update
It is the 11th Hour - Do you Know If Your U.S. Senator
Will Vote to "Draft America's Daughters?"
To: Organization Leaders and Individuals
From: Elaine Donnelly, President, Center for Military Readiness
Currently in the Senate Version of the National Defense
Authorization Act for 2017 (NDAA)
I am writing again to encourage you to express your views before members of theHouse/Senate Conference Committee approve misguided legislation to "Draft America's Daughters."
We have just posted this brief article on our website, which includes basic facts on which to act:
Indications are that the Senate/House Conference Committee, currently meeting behind closed doors, is disputing $18 billion in spending authorizations. Divisions are wide, but conferees could decide to "split the difference" - perhaps in time to wrap things up before the pre-election recess in early October.
There is no way to "split the baby" on legislation sponsored by Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) Chairman John McCain, which would require young women to register with Selective Service and a possible future draft. McCain's legislation also would take the first steps toward "National Service," another form ofco-ed conscription.
Will you do what you can to make sure the defense bill does not include a mandate to Draft Our Daughters? The time to act is NOW.
There is a great need for more grassroots pressure to persuade Chairman McCain to defer to the House version of the bill, which does not include a mandate to register young women.
Chairman McCain is unlikely to change unless his colleagues press hard, House conferees stay firm in support of their own version of the NDAA, and he feels pressure from constituents. Interested Americans should contact McCain and hold him accountable for doing the right thing.
In addition to Chairman McCain, others on the priority list include Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY), John Cornyn (TX), David Vitter (LA), Thad Cochran(MS), Roy Blunt (MO), Richard Burr (NC), Dan Coats (IN), Michael Enzi (WY),Bob Corker, (TN), and John Barrasso (WY).
The following senators have not taken a position on the issue; constituents need to find out why: Charles Grassley (IA), Lamar Alexander (TN), Shelley Moore Capito(WY), Mike Crapo (ID), Cory Gardner (CO), Dean Heller (NV), Ron Johnson(WI), Rand Paul (KY), Rob Portman (OH), Marco Rubio (FL), and Patrick Toomey (PA).
The following Republican senators and all SASC Democrats voted to supportChairman McCain's Draft Our Daughters language in committee: Kelly Ayotte (NH),Joni Ernst (IA), Deb Fischer (NB), Lindsay Graham (SC), Dan Sullivan (AK), andThom Tillis (NC). All of these, and Democrats as well, should be held accountable for their votes and persuaded to undo the damage before final passage of the NDAA.
The following senators have gone on record in opposition to Chairman McCain's co-ed conscription mandates, either by voting to strike his legislation in committee, or by co-signing a "Dear Colleague" letter asking Chairman McCain to remove his Draft America's Daughters legislation from the Senate NDAA: John Boozman (AR), Tom Cotton (AR), Ted Cruz (TX) Steve Daines (MT), Orrin Hatch (UT), John Hoeven(ND), James Inhofe (OK), Johnny Isakson (GA), James Lankford (OK), Mike Lee(UT), Jerry Moran (KS), David Perdue (GA), Jim Risch (ID), Pat Roberts (KS),Mike Rounds (SD), Ben Sasse (NE), Tim Scott (SC), Jeff Sessions (AL), John Thune (SD), and Roger Wicker (MS). All should be thanked for taking a stand against the legislation to Draft America's Daughters.
On the House side, in addition to Armed Services Committee Chairman "Mac" Thornberry (TX), the House conference committee delegation includes: Rob Bishop(UT), Mike Conaway (TX), J. Randy Forbes (VA), Chris Gibson (NY), Vicky Hartzler (MO), Joe Heck (NV), John Kline (MN), Doug Lamborn (CO), Frank LoBiondo (NJ), Trent Franks (AZ), Jeff Miller (FL), Mike Rogers (AL), Bill Shuster (PA), Elise Stefanik (NY), Mike Turner (OH), Joe Wilson (SC), and Rob Wittman (VA).
With the exception of Joe Heck, all Republican conferees voted "No" in committee. Democratic conferees, except for John Garamendi (CA), voted "Yes." Chairman Thornberry and like-minded colleagues should be encouraged to stand firm in the conference committee.
The Department of Defense registered objections to many provisions in the Senate bill, but not to Chairman McCain's Draft Our Daughters provision.
This means that if the NDAA passes with McCain's language intact, President Obama will sign it, doing irreparable harm to military readiness as well as to young women.
Please consider taking immediate action to contact members of the Senate and House, particularly Armed Services Committee members who will be involved in the House/Senate Conference to reconcile both versions of the NDAA. Ways to do so are listed here for your convenience:
Articles providing more information on legislative actions is available on our webpage, www.cmrlink.org. If you have questions or would like to share information, please call Elaine Donnelly at 734/464-9430.
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The Center for Military Readiness, founded in 1993, is an independent, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) public policy organization that reports on and analyzes military/social issues. Nothing in this article should be construed as an endorsement of any candidate. More information on all issues discussed is available on the CMR website,www.cmrlink.org