WASHINGTON – Following her vote in favor of the bipartisan National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), United States Congresswoman Jahana Hayes (CT-05) released the following statement. This annual package contains all the funding for the coming fiscal year for the Department of Defense.

“The fiscal year 2020 NDAA contains numerous important provisions, including 12 weeks of paid family leave for all federal employees, a pay increase for service members, and the repeal of the so-called ‘widow’s tax’, whereby Gold Star families were losing hundreds of dollars a month in benefits. I have been a strong advocate of eliminating this undue burden on Gold Star families since coming to Congress and introduced legislation to address the offset earlier this year. I am happy to see it finally eliminated.

Unfortunately, several bipartisan provisions I supported in the House bill we passed in July were not contained in the final package, including repealing the 2002 Authorization of Military Force (AUMF), preventing unauthorized war with Iran, and ending American support for the war in Yemen.  

No piece of legislation is perfect and this one is no different. While I am disappointed in the exclusion of previously agreed to bipartisan items, I remain committed to moving forward on these important issues.”


Rep. Jahana Hayes has been a public school teacher in Connecticut for more than 15 years and was recognized in 2016 as the National Teacher of the Year. Currently serving her first term in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Hayes sits on the Committees on Education & Labor and Agriculture and proudly represents Connecticut’s 5th District.