President Donald Trump has signed into law a sweeping defense policy bill that authorizes a $700 billion budget for the military, including additional money for missile defense programs to respond to the growing nuclear weapons threat from North Korea.
But there’s a catch. The $700 billion budget won’t become reality until lawmakers agree to roll back a 2011 law that set strict limits on federal spending, including by the Defense Department. The law caps 2018 defense spending at $549 billion.
Trump called on Congress to “finish the job” and remove the cap on defense spending, and pass a funding bill that “fully funds our military.”
Lawmakers have yet to reach a deal. Many Republicans favor easing the caps for defense spending only. Democrats also want to increase other government spending.
–The Associated Press, Darlene Superville