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Senate Proceeding on Jul 14th, 2009 :: 1:24:30 to 1:44:10
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John McCain

1:24:26 to 1:24:47( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: just made be made part -- come after the ending of morning business. the presiding officer: without objection. morning business is closed. under the previous oer the senate of senate bill clerk will repor the clerk: s. 1390 to authorize appropriations for

John McCain

1:24:30 to 1:44:10( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: John McCain

John McCain

1:24:48 to 1:25:10( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: fiscal year 2010 for milary activities of the department of defense and so forth and for other purposes. mr. mc the presiding officer: the senator from arizona. mr. mccain: madam president, i want to thank chairman levin for his important comments about, and especially the letters from the secretary of the air force and the chief of staff of the

John McCain

1:25:11 to 1:25:33( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: air force on this issue. let me debate is not about depriving, this my view, the united states air force of a much of our arsenal to defend this nation's natio it's about who we will continue

John McCain

1:25:37 to 1:25:59( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: which we have already -- are acquiring 1 adding the f-350, the joint strike fighter which is very badly needed by the other services, as wel the f-thrive or t f-35; i believe, a very

John McCain

1:26:00 to 1:26:22( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: important counterpart to the f-22. the f-22 has great capabilities in certain areas and the joints strike fighter so this debate is not just about removing the funds for the f-22. what it's about is removing funds for the f-22 and ming forward with the joint strike fighter to give the united

John McCain

1:26:23 to 1:26:44( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: states air force, marines corps and navy a balanced invento that will maintain the united states air force, navy, and marines corps, as the most powerful projection of air power in the world for a long time to come. so i want to emphasize this is no about so much about

John McCain

1:26:45 to 1:27:06( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: terminating a program as it is ending a much needed program and supplementing it with that's -- i think sometimes this argument is portrayed simply in the area of the f-22 itself. i know the chairman and i and majority of t

John McCain

1:27:07 to 1:27:28( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: balanced, powerful, capable, united states air force, marines corpmarinecorps and navy throughout the 21st century. there have been various points raised in this discussion and will continue to be raised and i'd like to respond to several of those arguments that have been made during this debate so

John McCain

1:27:29 to 1:27:50( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: far and probably will be raised again during the rest of this debate. the first argument i want to address is that 187 f-22's will not meet operational demands at an acceptable level of risk. in the view of some air force officials, including air combat

John McCain

1:27:51 to 1:28:12( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: command general general john corley a total of81, f-22's would be sufficient to meet a low level of risk and a total of 243 to to meet operational demands with a modere level of risk. that is the view of some very credible individuals.

John McCain

1:28:13 to 1:28:34( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: our response to that is that in december 2004 the department of defense democratted 183 of the f-22's was sufficient to meet its military requirements. this back in december 2004. the department conducted several analyses which affirmed that

John McCain

1:28:35 to 1:28:58( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: number, based on a number of variables, including the length and time of wars that the department of defense believes it will ve to fight in the fu of likely adversaries. the president, the secretary of defense, the chairman and vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, the air force chief of staff and the secretary of the air force have all

John McCain

1:28:59 to 1:29:19( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: 187 of the particularly when combined with other u.s. mitary assets incl fighter aircraft, long-range stand off precision weapons to counter enemy aircraft and surface-to-air missile systems in the future from adversaries.

John McCain

1:29:20 to 1:29:42( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: we need to look at this in the entirety of its inventory. that means cyber warfare, it means long-range stand off precision weapons. it means in the capability of unmanned aircraft. look at the role that unmanned aircraft have played in iraq and afghanistan and in all candor,

John McCain

1:29:43 to 1:30:03( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: look at the role the f-22 has not afghanistan. it has not been deployed to and afghanistan, whereas our unmanned aircraft, our predators, have had a incredible effect in identifying, locating, and destroying the enemy.

John McCain

1:30:04 to 1:30:25( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: i think general petraeus will attest to that in a very persuasive fashion. in response to the argument that more f-22's are necessary to close a gap in fifth-genation fighters between the united states and china, secretary gates noted -- quote -- "when you look at potential

John McCain

1:30:26 to 1:30:47( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: threats, for example, in 2020, the united 2,700tac air, tactical aircraft. china will have 1,700. but ours 1,000 will be a fifth-generation aircraf including the f-22 and the and in 2025, that gap gets even bigger.

John McCain

1:30:48 to 1:31:08( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: so the negs a states lead over china alone 1,700 fifth-generation aircraft in 2025 does not provide additional fifth-generation aircraft, including f-22's, to take on a secondary threat seems to be

John McCain

1:31:09 to 1:31:31( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: secretary gates summarized his position on the operational need issue on june 18 when he said, and i quote, "the u.s. military has to have the flexibility across the spectrum of conflict to handle the threats of the future and huge investment for the one that is endangered by

John McCain

1:31:32 to 1:31:53( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: continuing the f-22 rap tear program." he concluded, "frankly, to be blunt about it, not buying 60 more f-22's imperilshe national security of the united states, i find complete nonsense." that's the statement of the secretary of defense.

John McCain

1:31:54 to 1:32:14( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: "the notion that not buying 60 more f-22's imperils the national security of the united states i find complete nonsense." as military assistant secretary of the air force for acquisition, general mark d. shackle ford capability that we get out of 187 f-22's we believe is more

John McCain

1:32:15 to 1:32:36( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: than sufficient for the type of threat that the secretary of defense is addressing in the future. whatever moderate risk may arise from ending the f-22 program now is merely short term and under the air force's combat air force restructure plan necessary for the air force to transition the

John McCain

1:32:37 to 1:32:58( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: current fleet to a smaller, more capable fifth-generation service for all the services." the next argument that's made is buying more f-22's could help mitigate a projected fighter shortfall of up to 800 aircraft by 2024, that air force leaders identified in projected gap recently identified within the air

John McCain

1:32:59 to 1:33:20( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: national guard's fighter inventory. such purchases could also hedge the united states against the ri problems developing in the air force's legacy force. our response to that is, the fighter gap that the air force identified is questionable, give

John McCain

1:33:21 to 1:33:43( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: than it turns on various assumptions regarding threats and whether the united states will fight by itself or as part of a coalition. in any event, the air force has put in place a plan that will both mitigate any shortfall in fighter capability and bridge the current fleet a smaller, more capable fighter force.

John McCain

1:33:44 to 1:34:05( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: an called the combat air force restruure plan, is to stop investing in the f-22 program after the current program of record of that plan addresses possible shortfalls in fighter capability more cost effectively than simply buying more f-22's.

John McCain

1:34:06 to 1:34:26( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: it does so by restructuring the air force's current fleet of fighters now and directing result neuroor more reliable fighters in the legacy fleet, including upgraded f-15 s and procuring less e

John McCain

1:34:27 to 1:34:48( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: aircra including the f-35 giant strike fighter. under the plan, those investments will have create a more capable fleet that can bridge th the to a future fleet with a smaller, more capable force. in addition, in the years ahead, the department of defense needs to focus on improving its capabilities for irregular

John McCain

1:34:49 to 1:35:09( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: warfare operations and the f-22 is not a key program for improving those capabilities. while the f-22 is an extraordinarily capable air-superiority plan form its limited air-to-ground capability makes it less appropriate for supporting counterinsurgency

John McCain

1:35:10 to 1:35:30( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: operationoperations s much so that secretary gates has pointed out several times the reality is, we are fighting two wars -- in iraq and afghanistan -- and the f-22 has not performed a single mission in either theater. the next argument is that decision to end the f-22 program

John McCain

1:35:31 to 1:35:52( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: is purely secretary gates has indicated nurous times that his decision to end the program is not resource-driven. he announced that decision on april 6, weeks before his plan was even submitted to the office of management and budget for vetting. on april 30,

John McCain

1:35:53 to 1:36:17( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: plainly stated, "if my top line were $ make the same decision regarding the f-22 program." that having been said, current fiscal crisis, buying more f-22's would likely reduce funding for other, more critically needed aircraft, such

John McCain

1:36:22 to 1:36:43( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: as the f-35, fa-18e & f and other planes electronic warfare capability and that capability is the combatant commander's number-one priority. in that sense, continuing to purchase of f-22's could create operational risk for the u.s. military in the near-term. the next argumenis that buying

John McCain

1:36:44 to 1:37:04( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: more f-22's will ensure the national guard gets modernized fighter aircraft sooner. our response is that under the total force policy, all the services,ncluding the air national guard, will receive joint strike fighters at the appropriate time and at the appropriate rate to replace their aging f-15 and f-16

John McCain

1:37:05 to 1:37:28( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: aircraft. the only requirement that the air national guard obtain joint strike fighter from the -- quote -- "additional views of senator chambliss in the report accompanying the fiscal year 2010 authorization bill." in a letter to senator chambliss, the head of the air national guard, lieutenant

John McCain

1:37:29 to 1:37:49( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: general harry m.wyatt iii noted, "i believe the current and future asymmetric threats to our nation particularly from seaborne cruise missiles requires a fighter platform such as the f-22. however, that threat is simply not this is something that's being closely lked at now in the

John McCain

1:37:50 to 1:38:10( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: ongoing quarterly defense review debate. when asked about the cruise missile threat during our committee hearing recently, secretary gates cor that the most effective counter to these sorts of threats is an aircraft that doesn't have a pilot inside the next argument that is made is large-scale production of

John McCain

1:38:11 to 1:38:31( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: f-35 joint strike fighters have only recently begun and yet increased to planned higher annual rates. until production, the argument goes, of the joint strike fighter has been successfully demonstrated, that those higher annual r imprudent to shut down the f-22 production line which is the

John McCain

1:38:32 to 1:38:54( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: only "hot" fifth-generation production line. ow response is that give -- our response is that given how relatively similar the manufacturing efforts supporting the joint strike fighr are to those supporting the f-22, concerns about an overall compromise in the industrial base appears to be overstated. in addition, whatever moderate

John McCain

1:38:55 to 1:39:15( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: risk may afries endin -- arise from ending the f-22 program is acceptable. it is sho term in duration and under the air force's combat air force restructure plan necessary for the air force to transition the current fleet to a smaller, more capable, fifth-generation fighter force for all the services.

John McCain

1:39:16 to 1:39:36( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: it is true production of the joint strike fighter isn't anticipated until 2015. the program is making very meaningful progress, but maturation in the technical, software, and testing aspects of

John McCain

1:39:37 to 1:39:58( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: the program exceeding legacy standards including those for the f-22. all 19 systems development and demonstration aircraft will roll out by the end of the year in major assembly on the 14 aircraft comprising the earlier low-rate initial production lots have begun. i can assure the members of this

John McCain

1:39:59 to 1:40:24( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: body that and our capable staffs will be keeping a very, very close eye on the joint strike fighter production. it is vital that that aircraft be -- meet its cost estimates and meet its time schedules. at this point, the first of those copies are expected to be

John McCain

1:40:26 to 1:40:48( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: delivered on time to fo eglin air force base in 2010 and the first capable fighter versions are expects to be delivered to the marine corps in 2012 and the navy in 2015. this is not to say that we should take, as i said, our eyes off the program. we need to

John McCain

1:40:49 to 1:41:09( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: progress on the program to ensure that costs remain stable. i majority of this body will be, that on the issue of whether or not the f-22 program should continue, the president, the secretary of defense, the chairman and vice-chairman of the joint chie air force chief of staff, and the secretary of air force are

John McCain

1:41:10 to 1:41:30( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: all correct. ending the f-22 program now is vital to bridge capability to a more capable fifth-generation fighter force that is best equipped to both meet the needs of our deployed forces today and the emerging threats of tomorrow.

John McCain

1:41:31 to 1:41:53( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: madam president, finally, the chairman and i are not unaware the fact that this will lead to the loss of jobs in certain states and certain production facilities around the country. we know this particularly in times of unemployment across the country. but i'd like to

John McCain

1:41:54 to 1:42:15( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: argument, one that the f-35, the gets into production will al be a job creator. but i would also point out that the purpose of building weapons is not to create jobs. the purpose is simply to this nation's national security.

John McCain

1:42:16 to 1:42:36( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: now, we have an obligation to be careful stewards of all of our taxpayers' dollars. but most importantly, those taxpayers' dollars that go to defense of this nation should be first and foremost what can best defend the nation's national security in times when we are in two wars and facing future

John McCain

1:42:37 to 1:42:57( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: threats that are formidable in the view of most. so we are for the parts of our country, including the state of georgia, where there are a large number of jobs that are at risk. our sympathy is with them, and we will do everything that we

John McCain

1:42:58 to 1:43:19( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: can to provide job opportunities, including in the defense industries across this country. but we should spend taxpayers' dollars for weapons systems simply to create or keep jobs. that's not our -- the use of taxpayers' dollars. if we want to do that en there are many o

John McCain

1:43:20 to 1:43:42( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: should fully fund to help create jobs and small business opportunities across this nation. madam president, this issue i hope will continue to be today and that we could resolve it hopefully sometime tomorrow morning with a final vote. i know from previous experience

John McCain

1:43:43 to 1:44:05( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: that there are perhap perhaps 100 or more amendments that await the consideration of this body on the defense authorization bill. this is obviously a very important issue and this issue is perhaps even more important than the $1.75 billion we're talking about. this debate is about whether we're going to make the tough

John McCain

1:44:06 to 1:44:10( Edit History Discussion )

John McCain: decisions to most wisely and most expeditiously defend this nation and spend those dollars wisely.

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