In a 277-147 vote, the House passed the fiscal year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act after a late night session where Republican lawmakers successfully fended off attacks to the budget’s topline and procurement accounts.

The $610 billion bill conforms to the limits set by last year’s budget deal, but House Armed Services Committee (HASC) Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) used the military’s wartime spending account, or Overseas Contingency Operations, to fund $18 billion in base expenses. The hope is to trigger the next president to ask for supplemental funding when OCO funds run out in April 2017, essentially increasing the military’s budget without busting the Bipartisan Budget Act.

CAPITOLRep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) attempted to curb some of the extra procurement funding added to OCO. His amendment would have reduced base budget procurement in the OCO account by $9 billion, leaving only the $1 billion included in the president’s budget request. However, the measure was defeated in a 132-289 vote.

Ellison accused House Republicans of raiding the wartime account to benefit the military-industrial complex during a speech on the House floor.

“Did I get a call from the president’s office or the Pentagon or Boeing? The answer would be number three, Boeing. That’s who called me and doesn’t like this particular amendment,” he said. “We didn’t hear from the others, we heard from industry, from the special interests.”

Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio), who chairs HASC’s tactical air and land forces subcommittee, maintained that the additional procurement funding would help increase military readiness.

“What pot of money funds come out of is kind of irrelevant,” he rebutted. “It’s not an issue of where do dollars come from, it’s an issue of where do they go.”

HASC Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-Wash.) announced that he would oppose the bill, which he voted for in committee. His change in vote was prompted when the Rules Committee did not allow debate of an amendment that would repeal language in the 2017 NDAA Democrats believe could lead to discrimination of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender contractors.

However, Smith said he was always skeptical of the way the bill funds the military.

A passionate case can be made for spending more for defense “but we have the money we have,” he said, arguing that instead of deeming OCO funds for base budget expenses, Congress should work to repeal the Budget Control Act. “If we continue down this funding path, we are not serving the military.”

Thornberry responded that while more predictable funding is needed, he is not willing to wait for lawmakers to strike a compromise. “We can do something today” to help improve readiness, he said.

Smith’s opposition of the bill follows a statement of White House policy issued Monday night, which indicated that President Barack Obama would veto the bill.

Many of the amendments discussed during the course of the two days of debate have centered around policy issues, including the Guantanamo Bay detention facility and the Pentagon’s implementation of climate change initiatives. Procurement took a backseat during the debate, with space and Air Force-related issues coming to the fore.

The House adopted an amendment to ease restrictions related to funding for development of rocket propulsion and launch systems in the hopes of ending reliance on the Russian RD-180 rocket engine. The measure, proposed by Smith and HASC Strategic Forces Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Ala.), was included in an package of amendments that was quickly approved with no debate.

“There are a lot of American companies that are working on developing a new engine so we will no longer have to rely on the Russian engine. The amendment … would allow those companies to use some of the money the Air Force is providing for the development of the new engine, to also develop a launch vehicle to go along with that engine,” Smith said. “I think this would greatly reduce our launch costs for the Air Force, which have been a significant problem recently.”

The language stipulates that up to 31 percent of funds authorized for engine development in fiscal year 2017 may also be used for including for developing a launch vehicle, an upper stage, a strap-on motor, or related infrastructure.

Earlier on Wednesday, lawmakers narrowly beat down an amendment that would have required the Pentagon maintain at least one domestic manufacturer of rocket motors for tactical missiles that primarily use solid propellant. The language, offered by Rep. David McKinley (R-W.V.), was defeated in a 211-213 vote, with both parties supporting and opposing the amendment in almost equal numbers.

An amendment that would prohibit the Air Force from retiring the U-2 as passed by voice vote, as was a measure that would require the defense secretary to submit a report on the total cost of research, production and maintenance of the service’s B-21 bomber.

On Tuesday, lawmakers boosted funding for the Army’s Patriot Missile Segment Enhancement by $82 million in order to mitigate a shortfall. That increase was mitigated by decreasing National Nuclear Security Administration funding.

The Senate will take up its own version of the bill next week.