A lot has happened in Congress these past few months that have a big impact on our region and our national security. Here's a quick breakdown:
My Seapower Legislation – As Chairman of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, it's my job to author key portions of the annual defense policy bill that have to do with the Navy, Marine Corps, and the Air Force (and have a huge impact on Hampton Roads). This year, my Subcommittee's legislation did several critical things, including 1) Authorize the highest level of shipbuilding funding since the Reagan era 2) Protect 1/12th of the Navy Fleet from being inactivated 3) Stop the Administration's efforts to scrap 1 out of 10 Carrier Air Wings and 4) Put down a "down payment" on the 350-ship Navy America needs.
Annual defense policy bill passed the House – After my legislation passed out of my Subcommittee, it also passed the House Armed Services Committee, and was included in the annual defense policy bill. The annual defense policy bill passed the House.
Bipartisan push to base Triton at Wallops Island – Recently, I led 18 Members of Congress from both parties in sending a letter to the Secretary of the Navy and the Chief of Naval Operations urging the use of Wallops Island, Virginia as the permanent East Coast base for the MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft. Wallops Island is already home to innovative work in the commercial space industry as well as supporting critical NASA and U.S. military missions – it would be an ideal location to permanently station this important asset.
Founded the NASA Caucus – I'm excited by the cutting-edge work that NASA is doing, and proud that so much of it is happening right here in Virginia. NASA is poised to make exciting new breakthroughs and reach new horizons in the years ahead. Recently, I founded the bipartisan Congressional NASA Caucus to help enhance the understanding of Members of Congress about the important work being done at places like the Langley Research Center and Wallops Flight Facility, and speak directly to the public about the great work NASA does around the country.
There is no higher Constitutional obligation than to provide for our national security. I will continue fighting every day to ensure our nation is secure, our citizens are safe, and our servicmembers are equipped to accomplish their missions and come home to us.
Yours in service,
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