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Washington, D.C.  – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik spoke on the House floor in support of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2021. She highlighted key themes and provisions that are important to United States interests and the interests of Fort Drum and the 10th Mountain Division. Read her full remarks below and watch them above:

"Thank you, Mr. Thornberry. I rise in strong support of this bipartisan bill.

As the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities, I am proud of our oversight and legislative activities this year, which have included: recharging our science and technology enterprise; strengthening our nation’s cybersecurity; expanding the resources and authorities for irregular warfare activities across the globe; and bolstering our biological threat and pandemic preparedness efforts.

Two years ago, I introduced legislation in the NDAA that created the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence with the purpose of accelerating and advancing the development of AI across the federal government. I applaud the Commission for their work on this important issue, and I am pleased that this conference report includes seventeen of their recommendations – including elevating the role of the Joint AI Center, modernizing how the DoD attracts and retains AI talent, and ensuring our AI research ecosystem maintains its competitive advantage over China.

Second, this bill extends and expands the opportunities for our Special Operations Forces to partner with foreign forces, build critical relationships, and more effectively counter the malign influences of Russia and China.  This bill ensures that all of our Special Operations Forces -- active duty, reserve, national guard, and their families -- are provided the care and support that they deserve.

Third, this bill takes concrete steps to protect critical defense technologies, strengthen cybersecurity cooperation with the defense industrial base, and rebuild our domestic manufacturing capabilities for sensitive microelectronics and semiconductor components.  This bill brings transparency to federally funded research while at the same time restricting foreign influence on our University campuses.

As the chief advocate for Fort Drum and the 10th Mountain Division, I am proud to deliver results for the Army’s most deployed Division since 9/11. This year’s NDAA addresses our homeland missile defense, as Fort Drum is named as the preferred east coast missile defense site. I am also happy to include provisions that require plans for renovating Child Development Centers and a review of IT infrastructure enhancements at Army mission training complexes. These provisions are critical to enhance readiness and ensure the 10th Mountain Division can conduct safe and secure operations.

I would like to recognize my Subcommittee Chairman, Congressman Jim Langevin of Rhode Island, for his partnership on these issues.   And lastly, I would like to take a moment to thank Ranking Member Thornberry for his leadership and guidance not only this year, but his many years of truly exemplary service.

I urge my colleagues to support this Bill and vote YES.  With that, I yield back."