During a hearing of the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Kate Britt (R-Montgomery) further criticized the Biden administration’s plans to reverse course on moving U.S. Space Command headquarters to Alabama, and she directly addressed U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin about why it rightfully belongs in Huntsville.
“As the leader of the Department of Defense, I implore you to cut through the politics and make a final basing decision for the U.S. Space Command headquarters,” Britt said to Austin. “As you know, Huntsville’s Redstone Arsenal finished first in both the Air Force’s Evaluation Phase and the Selection Phase. That leaves no doubt that the Air Force’s decision to choose Redstone as the preferred basing location was correct and it was done on the merits. That decision should remain in the Air Force’s purview.”
Britt referenced an NBC News report where multiple U.S. officials claimed Biden was working to undo a Trump-era decision to move Space Command to Alabama due to the state's abortion laws.
"Media reports have said that the President and those in the White House are preparing to prioritize partisan political considerations at the expense of our national security, our military modernization, and our force readiness, and for me that is deeply disturbing," Britt continued.
"The bottom line is not only that Huntsville's workforce is best-prepared to support Space Command's mission – and also the City of Huntsville is the best place for Space Command's workforce to thrive and live the American Dream. Locating the permanent Space Command headquarters on Redstone Arsenal undoubtedly remains in the best national security interest of the United States."
The Biden administration has said moving Space Command would lead to costly operational disruptions at a time when tensions with China are high. However, Britt argued having Space Command in Alabama would give the U.S. the best strategic position to face China or any other threat.
"You [Austin] referenced earlier in your remarks the build-up of China in both space and cyberspace," Britt said. "My colleague across the aisle said Xi Jinping says that the U.S. has a flawed and failing political system. Do not prove him right. Urge the President to take the politics out of this. Do what is best for making sure we are ready and capable to face China on all fronts. Urge him to allow the Air Force to do its job. It is certainly, in my opinion, past time."
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