Skip to Main

June 14, 2024

Schweikert Amendments to Reform Defense Department Through AI Clear House

Contact: Katie West                                                                  202-225-2190

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representative David Schweikert’s (AZ-01) amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2025 passed the House. These amendments promote the further implementation of innovation in order to create cost-savings for the Department of Defense.

Today, Amendment No. 985 ensures the audit of the Department of Defense’s financial statements is conducted using artificial intelligence to help streamline the internal review process. The amendment also mandates that the technology be developed by both the Secretary of Defense and Inspector General of the Department of Defense.

The Defense Department has failed to achieve a clean financial audit for six consecutive years since it first started auditing itself in 2018. In fact, certain publications have stated that “it’s no surprise” the Pentagon has yet to achieve an independent audit, noting the lack of adequate information obstructing a comprehensive accounting evaluation.

“We’ve just passed year six where the Pentagon has been described as functionally un-auditable,” said Rep. Schweikert. “What if we thought creatively and allowed AI to help us identify what we actually have in our DOD inventory? We ought to protect the American taxpayer, but also protect our national defense by knowing what we own, and what we don’t own.”

Additionally, Amendment No. 1010 requires the Undersecretary of Defense (Comptroller) to conduct a study and a report to Congress on the potential cost-saving measures of incorporating artificial intelligence (AI) and multi-domain, attributable autonomous, semi-autonomous, unmanned systems, capabilities and processes into each branch of the military and its civilian workforce within 90 days of enactment.

Background on Rep. Schweikert’s Amendments:  

  • The Pentagon employs 2.9 million people and has over half a million assets worth $3.8 trillion, while its liabilities total $4 trillion. The 2023 audit required 1,600 auditors and 700 site visits to complete, costing $187 billion. 
  • In 2019, DOD’s audit cost was $428 million. Correcting the errors after the audit was conducted added another $472 million to the total cost.
  • This requires the Secretary of Defense to retire outdated financial management systems, and instead, replace said systems with innovative technologies adopted by the Secretary.
  • Additionally, other federal agencies who have integrated AI machinery have saved hundreds of thousands of labor hours, improved the auditability of business processes, and found millions of dollars available for de-obligation.


Congressman David Schweikert serves on the Ways and Means Committee and is the current Chairman of the Oversight Subcommittee. He is also the Vice Chairman on the bicameral Joint Economic Committee, chairs the Congressional Valley Fever Task Force, and is the Republican Co-Chair of the Blockchain Caucus, Telehealth Caucus, Singapore Caucus, and the Caucus on Access to Capital and Credit.

Back to News