FY 2016 Budget Request

President Obama said he intends to release his FY 2016 Budget Request on February 2nd.

While not yet confirmed by the Senate to be the next Secretary of Defense, former Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is expected to present the FY 2016 Defense budget.  Meanwhile, last week, the Senate Armed Services Committee scheduled Mr. Carter’s confirmation hearing for February 4th.

In one of his final public appearances last Thursday, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said lawmakers need to act on sequestration, warning the Department of Defense’s capabilities would otherwise “evaporate.”

Upcoming Hearings

This week, the Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a a two-part hearing on global challenges and the U.S. National Security Strategy, with Defense Departement officials testifying Tuesday and private sector panelists on Thursday. Former Secretary of State Dr. Henry Kissinger will testify before the Committee on Thursday.

The House Armed Services Committee will convene a hearing on Wednesday to examine improving the Department of Defense’s ability to respond to the pace of technological change.

State of the Union (SOTU) Address

Last Tuesday, President Barack Obama delivered his annual SOTU address before the 114th Congress. As is usual, the speech focused on domestic priorities – such as the U.S. economy, job creation, healthcare coverage and education opportunities – and also addressed international challenges – such as countering extremism and terrorist organizations, the U.S. drawdown in Afghanistan, expanding U.S. exports, and addressing climate change.