Saturday, December 21, 2019

White House Photo's of the Week of December 14-21, 2019

Office of the Press Secretary
Photos of the Week


Saturday, December 14, 2019

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, meets with members of the United States Army football team in their locker room before the 120th Army-Navy football game Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.  (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

 

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, shakes hands with head coach Jeff Monken as he meets with members of the United States Army football team in their locker room before the 120th Army-Navy football game Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.  (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

 

President Donald J. Trump participates in the coin toss at the start of the 120th Army-Navy football game Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.  (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

 

United States Navy cadets cheer for President Donald J. Trump during the 120th Army-Navy football game Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.  (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

 

Guests attending the 120th Army-Navy football game wave to President Donald J. Trump Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.  (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

 
Monday, December 16, 2019

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Vice President Mike Pence, participates in a roundtable discussion on the Governors’ Initiative on Regulatory Innovation Monday, Dec. 16, 2019, in the Cabinet Room of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)

 

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Vice President Mike Pence, participates in a roundtable discussion on the Governors’ Initiative on Regulatory Innovation Monday, Dec. 16, 2019, in the Cabinet Room of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)

 
Tuesday, December 17, 2019

President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump pose for a photo with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales and his wife Mrs. Patricia Marroquin Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, at the South Portico of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)

 

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and White House senior advisors, meets with Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales and his delegation Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, in the Oval Office of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)
 


 

First Lady Melania Trump walks with Mrs. Patricia Marroquin, wife of Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, along the Colonnade of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)

 

First Lady Melania Trump has tea with Mrs. Patricia Marroquin, wife of Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019, in the Green Room of the White House.  (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)

 
Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Vice President Mike Pence greets diners at Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019, in Frankenmuth, Mich.  (Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen)

 
Thursday, December 19, 2019

President Donald J. Trump, joined by Vice President Mike Pence, shakes hands with United States Rep. Jeff Van Drew, D-N.J. Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House. Rep. Van Drew, announced over the weekend that he would be changing his political affiliation to the Republican Party.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

President Donald J. Trump applauds guests attending the White House’s Summit on Transforming Mental Health Treatment Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building of the White House.  (Official White House Photos by Tia Dufour)

 

President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks at the White House’s Summit on Transforming Mental Health Treatment Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, in the South Court Auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building of the White House.  (Official White House Photos by Tia Dufour)

 
Friday, December 20, 2019

President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks prior to signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.   (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks prior to signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

Gen. Jay Raymond looks on as President Donald J. Trump announces Raymond as the first Chief of Space Operations and the first member of the United States Space Force Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

First Lady Melania Trump introduces President Donald J. Trump to the podium to deliver remarks prior to signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

First Lady Melania Trump, joined by Vice President Mike Pence, Second Lady Karen Pence, and Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump, applauds as President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks prior to signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.   (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

First Lady Melania Trump delivers remarks prior to President Donald J. Trump signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

President Donald J. Trump signs S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump pose for a photo with United States Air Force pilots Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, at Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews. Md. (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

 

President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump depart Hangar 6 at Joint Base Andrews, Md. Friday, Dec. 20, 2019, after signing S. 1790, The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020.  (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)
 

Bill Announcement

Office of the Press Secretary
On Friday, December 20, 2019, the President signed into law:


S. 1790, the "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020," which authorizes fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations principally for Department of Defense programs and military construction, Department of Energy national security programs, and Intelligence programs; specifies a military basic pay increase and other authorities relating to the U.S. Armed Forces; and provides authorities related to and makes other modifications to national security, foreign affairs, and other related programs.

Statement by the President

Office of the Press Secretary

STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT

 
    Today, I have signed into law S. 1790, the "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020" (the "Act").  The Act authorizes fiscal year 2020 appropriations for Department of Defense (DOD) national security programs, provides vital equipment modernization for our military branches, a well‑deserved pay raise for our service members, 12 weeks of paid parental leave to all Federal civilian employees, and, most significantly, authorizes the creation of the 6th Branch of the Armed Services, the United States Space Force as an Armed Force within the Department of the Air Force.  I applaud both the Senate and House Armed Services Committees for their work on the bill and the leadership of both chambers for securing its passage.  I note, however, that the Act includes several provisions that raise constitutional concerns.

    Several provisions of the Act, including sections 1254, 1273, 1698(a), and 2810, purport to restrict the President's authority to manage personnel, materiel, and logistical matters in the manner the President believes to be necessary or advisable for the successful conduct of military missions and foreign affairs.  While I share the objectives of the Congress with respect to maintaining the strength and security of the United States, my Administration will implement these provisions consistent with the President's authority as Commander in Chief and as the sole representative of the Nation in foreign affairs.

    Other provisions of the Act, including sections 1216, 1231, 1234(a), 1242, 1258(a), 2863(a)(2), 3534, 3541, 3543(d), 3551(c)(6), (8), and (11), 6701, 7124, 7125, 7402, 7412(b)(1)(B), and 7426, purport to dictate the position of the United States in external military and foreign affairs.  My Administration will treat these provisions consistent with the President's exclusive constitutional authorities as Commander in Chief and as the sole representative of the Nation in foreign affairs, including the authorities to determine the terms upon which recognition is given to foreign sovereigns, to receive foreign representatives, and to conduct the Nation's diplomacy.

    Some provisions of the Act in particular, including sections 1222(a), 1234(a), 1237(b), 1686(a), and 6704, purport to require that the Congress receive a certification, notification, or report before the President directs certain military or diplomatic actions.  Section 1234(a) of the Act, for example, purports to require congressional notification before providing Russia with a notice of intent to withdraw from the Open Skies Treaty.  I reiterate the longstanding understanding of the executive branch that these types of provisions encompass only actions for which such advance certification or notification is feasible and consistent with the President's exclusive constitutional authorities as Commander in Chief and as the sole representative of the Nation in foreign affairs.

    I note also the understanding of the executive branch that the definition of the "exclusive economic zone" in section 3532(3) of the Act is provided for purposes of the Maritime SAFE Act only (Division C, title 35, subtitle C) and does not purport to alter the definition of the United States' exclusive economic zone for all other purposes, including those set forth in Department of State Public Notice 2237 published in the Federal Register, Vol. 60, No. 163, August 23, 1995, pages 43,825-43,829.

    Sections 1042 and 1043 of the Act purport to restrict transfers of detainees held at United States Naval Station, Guant├ínamo Bay.  I fully intend to keep that detention facility open and to use it, as necessary or appropriate, for detention operations.  Consistent with the statements I have issued in signing previous National Defense Authorization Acts, I reiterate the longstanding position of the executive branch that, under certain circumstances, restrictions on the President's authority to transfer detainees violates constitutional separation-of-powers principles, including the President's constitutional authority as Commander in Chief.

    Other provisions of the Act present concerns under the Constitution's Appointments Clause and the separation of powers.

    First, section 953(b)(1) of the Act provides that the incumbent Commander of the Air Force Space Command (Commander/AFSC) may serve in the new office of Chief of Space Operations (CSO) for a term of 4 years without another appointment by the President that would be subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.  This provision would raise Appointments Clause concerns if understood to allow the incumbent Commander/AFSC to accede automatically to the new office.  My Administration will therefore construe section 953(b) to require either the President alone or the Secretary of Defense to appoint the Commander/AFSC as CSO.  Although my Administration believes the Congress should continue to require that permanent leaders of each Armed Force be presidentially appointed and Senate-confirmed, we respect the Congress's decision to permit appointment of the CSO by a constitutional alternative method during this transitional period.

    Additionally, for a 1-year period following enactment of the Act, section 953(b)(2) would authorize the Secretary of Defense to permit the CSO to serve concurrently as the Commander of the United States Space Command (Commander/USSC) without further appointment.  The Secretary's exercise of that authority could displace the incumbent Commander/AFSC, however, who currently serves as Commander/USSC pursuant to an appointment by the President, with Senate confirmation, and who is thus removable only by the President.  My Administration will apply section 953(b)(2) consistent with the President's removal authority over officials who exercise executive authority.

    Second, section 509(a) of the Act purports to condition the authority of the Secretary of Defense to increase the retired grade of a military officer on the advice and consent of the Senate.  As applied to any retired military officer, living or dead, this provision violates the separation of powers by giving the Senate a role in an executive decision that the Constitution does not explicitly allocate to the Senate.  My Administration will accordingly treat the purported requirement of Senate confirmation as ineffective.

    Third, section 6306 of the Act requires the Director of National Intelligence to establish a "Supply Chain and Counterintelligence Task Force" responsible for standardizing the sharing of national security information within the executive branch.  The Task Force will consist of representatives of various agencies, but section 6306 does not specify the manner of their selection.  To avoid Appointments Clause concerns, my Administration will construe this provision as providing for the Director of National Intelligence, a department head, to approve selections to the Task Force.

    Fourth, similar to section 739 of the Act of last year's National Defense Authorization Act, section 733 deepens existing violations of the Appointments Clause, the Incompatibility Clause, and the separation of powers contained within the statute establishing the Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine.  I reiterate the statement I provided on August 13, 2018, regarding the parallel provision in the 2019 Act.

    Fifth, section 3203 of the Act imposes a deadline on the President's nomination of a new member to the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board for Senate confirmation.  If the President misses the deadline, the provision requires periodic reports to the Senate explaining why and setting forth a plan to expedite the nomination.  This interference with the President's determination regarding whom to nominate for an office exceeds Congress's permissible role under the Appointments Clause.  I will continue to strive to nominate officers for Senate confirmation in a timely fashion but will treat section 3203 as advisory.

    Sixth, section 1034(a) of the Act, authorizing the designation of a Senior Technical Authority for each naval vessel class, may allow the exercise of significant governmental authority by a person not appointed as an officer.  To comply with the Appointments Clause, my Administration will ensure that an individual serves as a Senior Technical Authority only with the approval of the Secretary of Defense.

    Seventh, several provisions, including sections 1639, 1735, 1738, 6741, and 7221 of the Act, purport to establish, reauthorize or add to the authorities of hybrid commissions or boards comprising both executive branch and legislative branch appointees.  Because these commissions include members appointed by the legislative branch, under the separation of powers they cannot be executive branch entities, which must be subject to the supervision of the President under Article II.  My Administration, accordingly, will treat the commissions as legislative branch entities, separate from the executive branch.  The executive branch members of these Commissions will remain accountable to the President in the exercise of their statutory responsibilities.

    A number of provisions of the Act, including sections 1236(b)(5), 1261, 1264, 1277, 1285, 1644, 1650, 1686(b), 1691, 1711, 1722, 1744, 1753(a)(3), 3134(b)(2)(A), 3202(c), 5102(b), 5501, 3554(b)(1)(A) and (c)(1), 5502(b), 5511, 5502(b)(3)–(4), 5709(a) and (c), 5713, 5714, 5715, 5721, 5722(d)(1), 5304(b), 5602(b)(3)–(4) and (c)(1), 6310(a), 6315(b)(1), 6507(c)(1)(B), 6603(b), 6604(a) and (b), 6705, 6716, 6718(a), 6719, 6729(b), 6741, and 7221(e), purport to mandate or regulate the dissemination of information that may be protected by executive privilege, including by interfering with Presidential control of the process for making a determination that information is protected.  My Administration will treat these provisions consistent with the President's constitutional authority to control information, the disclosure of which could impair national security, foreign relations, law enforcement, or the performance of the President's constitutional duties.

    A number of other provisions of the Act, including sections 231(e)(2), 739(g)(2)(B)(v), 800(f)(2)(D), 1246(b)(5), 1260C(b)(2)(B), 1260E(b)(6), 5705, 6712(c)(1)(B), 6728(4), and 7145(2), purport to require the President or executive branch officials under the President's supervision to recommend certain legislative measures to the Congress.  My Administration will treat these provisions consistent with Article II, section 3 of the Constitution, which provides the President the discretion to recommend to the Congress only "such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient."

    Finally, section 633(c) of the Act purports to condition the authority of the Secretary of Defense to consolidate military exchanges and commissaries on notification by the Committees on Armed Services of both houses that they have received and accepted a Comptroller General report.  This condition is an impermissible form of congressional aggrandizement in the execution of the laws other than by the enactment of a statute.  Out of a spirit of comity, my Administration will wait a reasonable period of time to receive this notification but is not legally bound to do so.



                        DONALD J. TRUMP



THE WHITE HOUSE,
    December 20, 2019.

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP HAS SECURED CRITICAL FUNDING TO STRENGTHEN OUR NATIONAL DEFENSE AND SECURE OUR BORDERS

Office of the Press Secretary

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP HAS SECURED CRITICAL FUNDING TO STRENGTHEN OUR NATIONAL DEFENSE AND SECURE OUR BORDERS

“My mission is to put our country on the very best footing to thrive, excel, compete, and to win.” – President Donald J. Trump  


STRENGTHENING OUR DEFENSE: President Donald J. Trump is signing funding legislation that provides vital support for our military.

  • The funding legislation signed by the President provides a historic $738 billion in funding for defense, a $22 billion increase over last year.
  • Included in the funding legislation is a 3.1 percent pay raise for our Nation’s great military members, the largest such pay raise in a decade.
  • The package includes funding for the first time for the establishment of the Space Force, the first new branch of the Armed Forces to be established since 1947.
SECURING OUR BORDERS: This legislation maintains funding we need to enforce our immigration laws, secure our borders, and build the wall.
  • The legislation enables more than the $8.6 billion amount included in the budget request to be dedicated for the President’s border wall, including nearly $1.4 billion in direct funding.
  • The Administration successfully defeated every attempt by Democrats to undo the President’s authority to redirect and transfer additional funding to build the wall.
  • Funding was secured for additional immigration judges, which will help tackle the backlog of more than one million immigration cases.
  • This legislation rejects attempts to cap and slash Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention resources and preserves the successful Migrant Protection Protocols.
SUPPORTING ADMINISTRATION PRIORITIES: President Trump has secured important funding for programs that will further Administration priorities.
  • The President continued to support our Nation’s great veterans by securing nearly $92 billion in discretionary funding for the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  • The President achieved a more than 400 percent increase for the NASA lander program, support that will one day help to deliver our astronauts back to the Moon.
  • The President secured full funding to continue the fight against the opioid epidemic.
  • The legislation provides $1.7 billion for mental health programs in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
  • The President continued to stand up for the sanctity of life by defeating Democrat provisions that would have supported abortion and black-listed pro-life organizations.
  • The President secured $1 billion for BUILD grants, a vital tool to help State and local governments improve their infrastructure.
  • The legislation supports President Trump’s workforce development efforts by fully funding the President’s apprenticeship initiative.
  • The President’s Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Fund was funded at $100 million and the Development Finance Corporation was funded at $301 million.
  • The President’s Industries of the Future initiative was funded for the first time and will ensure United States economic strength into the next generation.

Statement from the President Regarding Fiscal Year 2020 Appropriations Legislation

Office of the Press Secretary
Statement from the President Regarding Fiscal Year 2020 Appropriations Legislation
 
The government funding bills I just signed into law contain big victories for my Administration and the American people.  They enable us to continue to advance our pro-growth, pro-worker, pro-family, America First agenda.

These bills will help us rebuild and invest in the military, with a $22 billion increase in defense spending (to $738 billion in Fiscal Year 2020), a pay raise of 3.1 percent for the troops, and the establishment of the United States Space Force.  At the same time, the bills enable us to help our veterans by robustly funding the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and ensuring America’s veterans receive the best choice in their care between VA, the community, telehealth, and urgent care.

The legislation increases access to affordable and high-quality child care for American families.  It also expands apprenticeships and workforce development programs and extends the paid parental leave tax credit and the work opportunity tax credit, providing grant incentives for businesses to hire and retain well-qualified employees.

The legislation builds on criminal justice reform efforts by providing $75 million for my Administration’s historic Criminal Justice Reform initiative, the First Step Act.

We continue to defend America’s most vulnerable, the unborn.  The legislation preserves all pro-life protections like the Hyde Amendment; rejects Senator Jeanne Shaheen’s anti-life amendment that could have increased funding for pro-abortion organizations; and rejects all anti-life riders in the partisan versions of these bills that originally passed the House, including one that would have undermined my Administration’s pro-life Title X rule.

The legislation preserves my authorities to build the wall on our southern border, and it prevents attempts to slash and cap ICE detention beds, as well as efforts to defund and block my Administration’s successful strategies and use of available law enforcement tools, which have produced dramatic reductions in illegal border-crossings.

We have now also repealed the Obamacare Medical Device Tax, which threatened access to cutting-edge devices that save lives and enhance the quality of life for all Americans.  We also eliminated the Obamacare Cadillac Tax, which would have imposed a 40 percent tax on 1 in 5 employers in 2022, ultimately placing severe financial burdens on employees.

Taken together, the government funding bills guarantee that critical priorities – investing in the military, ensuring Americans are more prosperous and healthy, delivering border security, engaging on criminal justice reform, and defending life – will be met in the upcoming year.
 

REMARKS BY PRESIDENT TRUMP AT SIGNING CEREMONY FOR S.1790, NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2020

Office of the Press Secretary

REMARKS BY PRESIDENT TRUMP
AT SIGNING CEREMONY FOR S.1790,
NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT FOR FISCAL YEAR 2020

Joint Base Andrews
Prince George’s County, Maryland

 

7:51 P.M. EST

     THE PRESIDENT:  Well, thank you very much.  And, thank you, Melania.  And hello, Joint Base Andrews -- special place.  At ease.  We have good news for you.

     On behalf of the First Lady, Vice President Mike Pence, Mrs. Pence, I want to wish everybody a very merry Christmas, happy New Year.

     This is a truly historic day for the American Armed Forces. In just a few minutes, I will proudly sign into law the largest-ever investment in the United States military.  In fact, I can say: the largest ever, by far.

     Today also marks another landmark achievement, as we officially inaugurate the newest branch of our military.  This is a very big and important moment.  It's called the Space Force.  (Applause.)

     Most importantly, we are supporting you -- the heroes who defend our families, secure our nation, and protect our freedom.
The 2020 National Defense Authorization Act is about making sure our warfighters have the tools, resources, and equipment you need to fight and to win -- all the time, to win.  We're making our military stronger and more powerful than ever before.

     We're joined today by Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, and our service Secretaries.  General Mark Milley -- thank you very much, General.  Fantastic job you're doing.  And members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; many distinguished military leaders; and Representatives Mac Thornberry, Joe Wilson, Mike Rogers, Michael Turner, Michael McCaul, Robert Wittman, French Hill, Matt Gaetz, Greg Pence, and Michael Waltz.  And I want to give a special shout out to a very great gentleman who loves the military, loves this country: Senator Jim Inhofe.  He's worked so hard on this.  (Applause.)  Thank you, Jim.  Thank you all.

     I want to extend a special thanks to Commander of the Air Force District of Washington, Major General Ricky Rupp -- (applause) -- and Commander of the 11th Wing and Joint Base Andrews, Colonel Andrew Purath.  Thank you, (inaudible).  (Applause.)

     And I am profoundly grateful to everyone at America’s Airfield.  That’s what they call it: America's Airfield.  I use it often.  (Laughter.)

     There is no greater honor than to serve as your Commander-in-Chief.  I especially want to thank the incredible people who fly and maintain Air Force One.  You are the best of the best.  Thank you very much for doing such an incredible job.  (Applause.)
  
     Today’s signing of the 2020 NDAA is a watershed event in the truest sense of the word.  Before I came into office, the military endured deep and devastating budget cuts.  Our military, quite frankly, was very depleted.

     As a candidate for President, I promised to reverse these crippling cuts, and to ensure our military remains unchallenged and unrivaled anywhere in the world.  And, right now, there is no one -- there is no country that comes even close.  (Applause.)

     The law I am signing today provides $738 billion -- that’s with a "B."  Seven hundred and thirty-eight billion dollars in defense funding for the 2020.  That’s an all-time record.  In the history of our country, that’s the highest amount we've ever spent on our military.  And that’s after $700 billion in my first year, and $716 billion last year.  And it's all made, right here, in the USA.  That’s very important.  (Applause.)

     And I have to say that we make the finest equipment, the finest planes, finest missiles, the finest ships.  We make the finest equipment anywhere in the world.  It's not even close.

     This brings our total investment in national defense, since my inauguration, to almost two and a half trillion dollars.  And what's the good of a budget if you don’t have the best military in the world?

     And, now, we focus on the budget a little bit.  Is that okay?  We'll focus on the budget.  Two and a half trillion dollars.  So, that's really something.  And it's new, and it's beautiful, and within the next 12 months you'll have most of it.

     In addition to massive acquisitions, in the past two years, this bill authorizes nearly 100 new F-35s; 24 brand-new F/A-18s; 155 Army helicopters, of all different types; 165 brand-new, beautiful Abrams tanks, said to be the best in the world; more than 50 Paladin howitzers; 2 new Virginia-class submarines; 3 new Arleigh Burke destroyers; a Ford-Class aircraft carrier, and two others on their way; and much, much more.

     But as we discussed earlier, our military is getting far more than just new equipment.

     For this first time -- and I have to say, you know what happened last year?  It was a good pay raise, but now you're getting another pay raise.  And this will be the largest pay raise in more than 10 years -- more than a decade.  So, if you don’t want it, you don’t have to take it.  (Applause.)

     For the first time since President Harry Truman created the Air Force over 70 years ago -- think of that -- we will create a brand-new American military service.  That’s such a momentous statement: 70 years ago, the Air Force.

     With my signature today, you will witness the birth of the Space Force, and that will be now officially the sixth branch of the United States Armed Forces.  That is something really incredible.  (Applause.)  It's a big moment.  That’s a big moment, and we're all here for it.  Space.  Going to be a lot of things happening in space.

     Because space is the world’s newest warfighting domain.  Amid grave threats to our national security, American superiority in space is absolutely vital.  And we're leading, but we're not leading by enough.  But very shortly, we'll be leading by a lot.
The Space Force will help us deter aggression and control the ultimate high ground.

     I particularly want to thank Vice President Mike Pence.  He was so involved in this with me.  This was a -- a real -- we had the spirit, the love that -- I think we can say, Mike, that we both had for this project.  Because we realized how important it is to our military, to our future, to our defense -- so important.  And it's going to blend in magnificently with everything else that we have.  So, I want to thank Mike Pence.  Mike, thank you very much.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Great job, Mike.  (Applause.)

     It was nearly half a century from Kitty Hawk to the creation of the Air Force.  And now it's 50 years after Apollo 11 that we create the Space Force.  With today’s signing, I will proudly appoint General Jay Raymond the first Chief of Space Operations.  And he will become the very first member of the Space Force.  And he will be on the Joint Chiefs.  He will be on the Joint Chiefs, which we're now expanding by one position.  That’s a very powerful position.  So, General Raymond, congratulations, and thank you for you everything you've done.  (Applause.)

     The 2020 NDA[A} also protects the vital legal tools we need to defend America’s borders.  The law improves education, childcare, and private housing for military families, and it ends the so-called “widow’s tax,” which blocked benefits for families of fallen heroes.  The tax is gone.  (Applause.)  It was very important.  That was very important to us.  The "widow's tax" is gone.

     After years of unrealized promises by other politicians, I honor my commitment today as I sign paid parental leave -- (applause) -- for the federal civilian workforce.  That’s paid, into law.  So thank you very much.  That’s a very big thing: paid parental leave.  Another thing that they've been trying to get for many years.

     As we head into Christmas, I am proud to report that we are giving every soldier, sailor, airman, Coast Guardsman, and Marine a well-earned pay raise.  In January, each of you will see the largest increase that you have had in such a long time.  In fact, it goes back so far that a lot of people don’t even know what that day it is.  I can just tell you: It's a lot of money.  And I say it, and I say it again;: If you'd like not to take it, if you'd like to make a donation to your great country, please just let us know.  We'll give you a little bit less.  (Laughter.)  Any takers, by the way?  I don’t know.  No, congratulations on that.

     With this legislation, we show our undying commitment to the warriors who keep us safe.  These are incredible warriors.  These are brave, powerful warriors.  And now they have the best equipment anywhere in the world and it's not even close.

     Just weeks ago, U.S. Special Forces brought the world’s most-wanted terrorist to justice.  The monstrous animal known as al-Baghdadi, the founder and leader of ISIS, is dead.  And his second was just given the post of being in charge, and he is also dead.  (Applause.)

     Within three years of record military investment, our country has rejected a future of American decline and embraced our destiny of American dominance.  Our military is now dominant -- far ahead of any of our competitors.  And if you saw where we started from, not so long ago, you'd really be amazed.

     I want to thank everybody, but I want to also thank those great companies that really designed -- made this equipment.  Because I have seen it and I’ve seen much of it in action, and I’ve, frankly, never seen anything like it in my life.  So I just want to congratulate you all.  Because together, we’re protecting our people, our values, our traditions, and our glorious American Flag.  (Applause.)

     I want to just end by wishing our armed forces -- our great people -- a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  God bless you.  God bless our military.  And God bless America.  God bless America.  (Applause.)

     So it’s now my honor to sign the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act into law.  And again, congratulations.  Thank you all very much.  Very, very special people.  Thank you very much.  (Applause.)

     This is the thickness.  Can you believe that?  (Laughter.)

     (The act is signed.)

     It’s now signed.  (Applause.)  


                               END                 8:07 P.M. EST

 


The White House · 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW · Washington, DC 20500-0003 · USA · 202-456-1111

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP IS FULFILLING HIS PROMISE TO REBUILD OUR NATION’S MILITARY AND SUPPORT OUR TROOPS

Office of the Press Secretary

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP IS FULFILLING HIS PROMISE TO REBUILD OUR NATION’S MILITARY AND SUPPORT OUR TROOPS

“America’s Armed Forces are more powerful than ever and growing even stronger.” – President Donald J. Trump


REBUILDING OUR MILITARY: President Donald J. Trump is delivering on his pledge to rebuild our Nation’s military.

  • Today, President Trump is signing the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year (FY) 2020, authorizing a historic $738 billion in defense spending.
  • The legislation continues President Trump’s rebuilding of our military, authorizing significant investment in vital equipment for our forces, including:
    • F-35, F/A-18, and F-15EX combat aircraft
    • UH-60M Blackhawks, AH-64 Apaches, MH-47G Chinooks, CH-53K King Stallions
    • Abrams tanks and Stryker combat vehicles
    • Virginia-class submarines, Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, a guided missile frigate, amphibious ships, and more.
SUPPORTING OUR TROOPS AND THEIR FAMILIES: President Trump is fulfilling his promise to support and enhance quality of life for our military members and their families.
  • The NDAA provides the Administration requested 3.1% pay raise for our troops, the largest such raise in a decade.
  • $5.3 billion is being authorized for disaster recovery at military installations across the country.
  • This bill supports military families by improving military education and child care.
  • The NDAA repeals the requirement that Department of Defense survivor benefits be reduced by Veterans Administration compensation benefits.
  • The bill supports our civilian workforce by providing up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave to nearly all Federal employees to help recruit the best and brightest for years to come.
BUILDING A FORCE FOR THE FUTURE: The President is modernizing our military, ensuring that it is ready to confront future threats.
  • The bill establishes the Space Force as the sixth branch of the Armed Services— marking the first time a new branch of the military will have been established since 1947.
    • This is a major priority for the President and will help ensure continued American dominance in space.
  • The NDAA supports the President’s nuclear modernization efforts.
  • The NDAA includes critical investments in artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, 5G, and hypersonic weapons that are essential in creating a more ready, lethal, and modern force.    
READY TO DEFEND AGAINST ALL THREATS: President Trump is ensuring our forces are fully prepared to defend against any and all threats.
  • The NDAA includes vital reforms to help improve the combat readiness of our military and make the Pentagon more efficient, while helping our forces become more agile.
  • The NDAA makes critical new investments in our military’s operations and maintenance accounts to improve readiness.
  • Acquisition reforms included in the NDAA will strengthen and secure our Nation’s industrial base, while improving Department of Defense access for innovators and small businesses.

TEXT OF A LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT TO THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE December 20, 2019

Office of the Press Secretary
 

TEXT OF A LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT

TO THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE


December 20, 2019



Dear Madam Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

In accordance with section 6(a) of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (H.R. 1158) and section 6(a) of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (H.R. 1865), I hereby designate as emergency requirements all funding (including the rescission of funds) so designated by the Congress in these Acts pursuant to section 251(b)(2)(A) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, as outlined in the enclosed list of accounts.

The details of this action are set forth in the enclosed memorandum from the Acting Director of the Office of Management and Budget.

                              Sincerely,



                              DONALD J. TRUMP

TEXT OF A LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT TO THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE December 20, 2019

Office of the Press Secretary
 

TEXT OF A LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT

TO THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
AND THE PRESIDENT OF THE SENATE


December 20, 2019
 


Dear Madam Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

In accordance with section 6(b) of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (H.R. 1158) and section 6(b) of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (H.R. 1865), I hereby designate for Overseas Contingency Operations/Global War on Terrorism all funding (including the rescission of funds) so designated by the Congress in these Acts pursuant to section 251(b)(2)(A) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, as outlined in the enclosed list of accounts.

The details of this action are set forth in the enclosed memorandum from the Acting Director of the Office of Management and Budget.

                              Sincerely,



                              DONALD J. TRUMP