TOPEKA - Steve Watkins, U.S. Army veteran, engineer, and Republican candidate for Kansas' 2nd Congressional District, released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the FY 2019 NDAA with a strong bipartisan majority.

"I was encouraged to see the House of Representatives set political differences aside earlier today to pass the FY 2019 National Defense Reauthorization Act (NDAA) with a strong bipartisan majority. The bill includes the largest pay raise our troops have seen in nine years, a growth of 2.6 percent. The act also eliminates bureaucratic red tape within the Department of Defense," said Steve Watkins. "Congress has provided the financial backing to support the President's commitment to rebuilding the military, making sure that our service members are well prepared to defend American interests across the world. I thank the House for honoring their commitment to our men and women in uniform."