Republican and Democratic leaders of the House Armed Services Committee said today they have reached agreement on provisions of the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The agreement among the House leaders sets the stage for House conferees to negotiate with their Senate counterparts to reach a unified bill that can then be voted on by both houses of Congress.

News of the agreement in the House came from Armed Services committee Chairman Adam Smith, D-Wash., and Ranking Member Mac Thornberry, R-Texas.

“We have reached bicameral agreement on the FY21 NDAA, which authorizes funding for the Department of Defense and the national security programs of the Department of Energy,” their statement reads. “As is the case every year, this agreement is the product of months of hard-fought negotiations.”

According to the release, the NDAA will include “important provisions affecting our national security,” as well as provisions for hazardous duty pay for service members, improvements to military housing and programs for military families, $8.4 billion in military construction projects for critical infrastructure, tools to deter China and Russia, and provisions on AI and cybersecurity.

The must-pass defense bill faces challenges from the White House, as President Trump has threatened to veto the NDAA if it does not include a repeal of Section 230 of the  1996 Telecommunications Act, which provides tech companies with liability protections for third-party content posted on their platforms.

“Section 230, which is a liability shielding gift from the U.S. to ‘Big Tech’ (the only companies in America that have it – corporate welfare!), is a serious threat to our National Security & Election Integrity. Our Country can never be safe & secure if we allow it to stand,” President Trump tweeted on Tuesday night.

It was unclear today when the full House will vote on the NDAA bill.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.