Earlier this month, the Government Accountability Office reportedly backed up the U.S. Air Force's 2021 decision to permanently locate the Space Command Headquarters on Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville.

The report cited "transparency and credibility" shortfalls but said the Air Force "largely followed guidelines directed by the secretary of defense."

Madison County Commission Chairman Dale Strong, a Republican candidate for Alabama's Fifth Congressional District seat up for grabs in November, insists that was based on the criteria that best suited the country's interests.

During an interview with Mobile radio FM Talk 106.5's "The Jeff Poor Show," Strong said the fight to keep the Air Force's plans to relocate to Huntsville is not over.

"It was about what was best for national security," Strong said. "It was the most thorough process that I've ever been a part of -- trying to find out what was best for America. Look at that report. It talks about education level. It talks about the ability to be able to expand at Redstone. It talks about the cost to construct, the cost to maintain.

"You look, Colorado, sitting here and throwing all these rocks at Alabama. And I'll be honest with you -- they have no [navigable] waters. They have a lot of missed work days because of snow. They have altitude sickness. Then, you look at it. They have a dope dispensary on every corner. That's not where you need people with top security clearances trying to make the best decision for our country."

Strong said the move would create around 1,700 jobs at Redstone Arsenal and about 3,000 "spinoff" jobs.

"It was clear," Strong said. "They said it was best for national security. It was best for America, and that's why we're going to continue to push it. This fight is not over, but I believe we've got the right people to be sure that hopefully, the Biden administration and the vice president doesn't go in here and do something just for a buddy deal. Let's do what's right for national security for America, and that's what I'm going to be fighting. This fight is not over."

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email jeff.poor@1819News.com.

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