Biden to Veto GOP Military Funding Bill Over Abortion, LGBTQ+, and DEI Concerns


President Joe Biden will veto House Republicans’ proposal for funding military construction and the Department of Veterans Affairs for fiscal year 2025.

The White House Office of Management and Budget criticized the GOP proposal on Monday as “partisan,” stating that the appropriations bill “would result in deep cuts to law enforcement, education, housing, healthcare, consumer safety, energy programs that lower utility bills and combat climate change, and essential nutrition services.”

“Similar to last year, H.R. 8580 includes numerous, partisan policy provisions with devastating consequences, including harming access to reproductive healthcare, threatening the health and safety of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex Americans, endangering marriage equality, hindering critical climate change initiatives, and preventing the administration from promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion,” OMB wrote in a policy statement.

Other objections are to sections of the bill preventing:

  • The closure or realignment of U.S. Naval Station Guantanamo Bay or the construction or modification of facilities in the United States to house transferred Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility detainees.
  • The VA from using funds to implement, administer, or otherwise carry out the final rule published on March 4, which expanded access to abortion counseling and abortion under limited circumstances for certain veterans and VA beneficiaries.
  • The VA from using funds to provide hormone therapies and surgical procedures for the purpose of gender transition-related procedures.
  • The VA from carrying out a departmental directive designed to ensure most Veterans Health Administration healthcare personnel receive COVID-19 vaccine doses.
  • The VA from reporting a person determined to be mentally incompetent during the VA benefits evaluation process without the order or finding of a judge, magistrate, or other judicial authority.
  • The use of funds to display any but the listed flags, including flags demonstrating support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex veterans and American citizens.
  • Use of funds made available in the bill or in previous appropriations acts to take “discriminatory action” regarding persons who do not support same-sex marriage due to a “sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction.”

The Biden administration also opposes the bill’s realignment of military construction funding from priority projects to other projects.

The House Appropriations Committee passed H.R. 8580 in a 34 to 25 vote last month, with Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Subcommittee Chairman John Carter (R-TX) asserting that the bill “reflects our deep commitment to our servicemembers, both during their active-duty service and when they become veterans.”

“It addresses critical security challenges in the Pacific while ensuring our heroes receive the care they deserve,” Carter wrote in a statement. “By fully funding veterans’ healthcare and investing in quality-of-life improvements such as housing and child care, we uphold our promise to support those who serve.”

Appropriations Committee Chairman Tom Cole (R-OK) added the bill is “a testament to our dedication to caring for those who selflessly served our nation, supporting our military families, and strengthening America’s defense.”

“We’ve fully funded healthcare and benefits for our veterans and ensured the quality of life of our troops and their loved ones are prioritized,” he wrote. “We also enhance America’s commitment to peace through strength by investing in key deterrence efforts in the Indo-Pacific.”

Naomi Lim
Naomi Lim
White House Reporter.

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