House Lawmakers Push to Keep Ballistic Missile Silos Viable

U.S. Air Force missile maintenance technicians attach a handling fixture to the reentry system of a Minuteman 3 missile inside a launch silo, during a June 2002 nuclear surety inspection at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana. Three House lawmakers are calling for Congress to use spending legislation again to deny the Pentagon any funds to begin decommissioning missile silos.
National Journal
Rachel Oswald
Add to Briefcase
Rachel Oswald
April 3, 2014, 7:33 a.m.

A  trio of House law­makers is ur­ging against provid­ing any funds in the next fisc­al year for the de­com­mis­sion­ing of U.S. in­ter­con­tin­ent­al bal­list­ic mis­sile silos.

U.S. Rep­res­ent­at­ives Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Cyn­thia Lum­mis (R-Wyo.) and Kev­in Cramer (R-N.D.) on Wed­nes­day wrote to the seni­or Re­pub­lic­an and Demo­crat­ic mem­bers of the House De­fense Ap­pro­pri­ations Sub­com­mit­tee ur­ging them to in­clude new lan­guage in up­com­ing fisc­al 2015 spend­ing le­gis­la­tion. The pro­posed pro­vi­sion would bar the Pentagon from us­ing any budgeted funds to “re­duce, con­vert, de­com­mis­sion, or oth­er­wise move to nondeployed status” any act­ive ICBM silos.

The Re­pub­lic­an law­makers hail from the three states that host the na­tion’s ar­sen­al of roughly 450 Minute­man 3 mis­siles.

The New START ac­cord with Rus­sia re­quires the United States by 2018 to re­duce to 700 the total num­ber of stra­tegic mis­siles and bomber air­craft that are act­ively de­ployed, with an ad­di­tion­al 100 sys­tems per­mit­ted in re­serve. However, the mat­ter of be­gin­ning the work re­quired to moth­ball some of the Minute­man silos is a polit­ic­al hot potato in Con­gress.

A bi­par­tis­an co­ali­tion of law­makers worked to­geth­er last year to in­sert lan­guage in the om­ni­bus fisc­al 2014 spend­ing law that for­bids the Pentagon from us­ing any ap­pro­pri­ated funds to carry out en­vir­on­ment­al stud­ies on silo de­com­mis­sion­ing. The Air Force last month put on hold a nas­cent ef­fort to con­duct a pre­lim­in­ary en­vir­on­ment­al as­sess­ment on silo shut-downs, after a num­ber of law­makers ac­cused the Pentagon of vi­ol­at­ing the spend­ing law.

Daines, Lum­mis and Cramer in their Wed­nes­day let­ter urged against provid­ing any fund­ing to the Pentagon that “may be used to pre­pare for or con­duct an en­vir­on­ment­al im­pact study, en­vir­on­ment­al as­sess­ment, or oth­er en­vir­on­ment­al study.”

What We're Following See More »
INTENDS TO CALL BY MONDAY
Trump Says He'll Call MBS to Ask About Khashoggi
5 hours ago
THE LATEST

"President Trump said he plans to call Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud about the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Trump spoke on Saturday during an appearance in the Oval Office with Pastor Andrew Brunson, who was recently released by the Turkish government."

Source:
SAYS HE TREATED HER FAIRLY
Trump on Blasey Ford: "We Won"
5 hours ago
THE LATEST

Asked by Lesley Stahl on 60 Minutes on Sunday night, President Trump said he thought he treated Dr. Christine Blasey Ford fairly, even as he was accused of poking fun of her at a rally. He then declined to address the issue further, saying "I'm not going to get into it, because we won. It doesn't matter. We won."

Source:
AUDIO OF TORTURE AND DEATH
Turkish Officials Claim To Have Video Of Khaggoshi's Killing
2 days ago
THE DETAILS

"The Turkish government has told U.S. officials that it has audio and video recordings that prove Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul this month, according to U.S. and Turkish officials. The recordings show that a Saudi security team ... killed him and dismembered his body, the officials said." Late Thursday, Turkey agreed to form a joint committee with Saudi Arabia to investigate Khashoggi's disappearance, signaling Saudi Arabia's likely intent to preempt sanctions from the United States. Members of Congress have asked President Trump curb weapons sales to Saudi Arabia.

Source:
SAUDIS WERE DISCUSSING PLAN
U.S. Intel Learned of Plot to Capture Khashoggi
3 days ago
THE LATEST
DIALS UP PRESSURE ON TRUMP
Turkey Says It Has Video Proving Khashoggi Was Killed
3 days ago
THE LATEST
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login