A defense authorization bill will not sail through the Senate unopposed, blocking hopes that it could be voted upon early this week, The Hill
reported, noting a strong objection to the measure from Republican Sen. Tom Coburn, who said it contains too much superfluous spending.
While both the House and Senate have thus far negotiated a middle ground for the $585 billion National Defense Authorization Act, Coburn, known as a "fiscal hawk," is holding back his support.
The Oklahoma senator, who is retiring, criticized it for having "packages and earmarks and every other kind of thing that shouldn’t be in" a defense bill, The Hill said.
Unanimous consent, Coburn told reporters on Tuesday, isn't going to happen, so a full vote in the Senate cannot move ahead until Thursday, The Hill noted.
Coburn joins Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in objecting to a land package currently contained within the proposed measure, which would "add 250,000 acres of new wilderness designations, conserve 400,000 acres of public land from development and create 15 new national parks or park expansions," The Hill wrote.
While the House voted to approve the measure on Dec. 4 — less than two days after a final version was presented — such consent violates the GOP's 2010 "pledge to America," Breitbart said
, noting the 1,648-page bill did not have enough time to be fully presented and digested.
The lame-duck session defense bill has sparked a deeper debate over public land packages, World magazine
Tucked inside the proposed defense legislation are 245,000 acres of land now designated as wilderness, eight new National Parks and the expansion of seven existing parks as well as a "swap" of 110,000 acres from federal to public ownership dedicated to mining, drilling and other infrastructure development, the magazine said.
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