- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The White House issued a veto threat Tuesday night on the annual House defense policy bill, citing objections to sequestration spending levels and lawmakers’ refusal to close the Guantanamo Bay terrorist detention center.

The House is set to vote this week on the fiscal 2016 National Defense Authorization Act, a $612 billion measure that sets spending limits for the Defense Department.

In a statement, the Office of Management and Budget said the bill “fails to authorize sufficient funding for our military’s priorities” and instead uses an Overseas Contingency Operations account that the president has called a budget “gimmick.”

The statutory ceiling on defense spending is $523 billion, but the House bill would add $96 billion under the contingency fund.

The White House also said the measure “fails to adopt many of the needed force structure and weapons system reforms included in the president’s budget,” including authorization of a new base realignment and closure (BRAC) round.

On Guantanamo, the administration said, rather than closing the facility — as Mr. Obama promised in his 2008 campaign — the measure would extend the life of the detention center.

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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