‘We’re at the end of our rope’: Will Space Command move to Alabama? Senator wants answers.
al.com May 3, 2023
(Tribune News Service) —As the indecision on a permanent home for U.S. Space Command lingers, Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville acknowledged Wednesday that there is not much else the state’s congressional members can do.
Redstone Arsenal has emerged through multiple assessments as the best location for Space Command, which is currently in its startup home in Colorado Springs. Yet the decision remains undetermined despite the Air Force announcement more than two years ago that Redstone was the preferred location.
“We’re about at the end of our rope here,” Tuberville said.
The senator on Wednesday opened his weekly conference call with reporters again calling for the announcement that Redstone will be the permanent home. It came on the heels of a Senate hearing Tuesday when Tuberville questioned Frank Kendall, secretary of the Air Force, who is charged with making the decision on Space Command.
Kendall responded to questions by saying he had no new information to share.
Even as Tuberville has advocated for more than two years for Redstone, he promised Wednesday to remain undaunted as Colorado’s congressional delegation continues fighting to hold onto Space Command.
“I fought for the swift relocation of SPACECOM to Huntsville since I came to D.C. more than two years ago,” Tuberville said. “I will not give up the fight. The facts are on our side. I know it. President Biden knows it. And the Air Force knows it. And even the sore losers from Colorado know it. Space Command should make its move to Redstone Arsenal official without further delay. It’s the right thing for our national security and the future of our operations in space.”
That said, there isn’t much else to do or say, the senator said. Colleagues in Congress have voiced support for Redstone and Tuberville has made a repeated point of spotlighting that Colorado finished fourth in Space Command assessments with bases in Nebraska and Texas finishing second and third, respectively, behind Redstone Arsenal.
Kendall said in March that “additional analysis” is underway to identify the best site for Space Command.
“I don’t know what else they can review,” Tuberville said in March. (Redstone is) by far the best place.”
Now almost two months later, it appears nothing has changed. Tuberville essentially declared it a victory Wednesday when Kendall acknowledged in testimony on Tuesday that determining a permanent home for Space Command was critical.
“Secretary Kendall confirmed what we knew to be true,” Tuberville said Wednesday. “It’s important the military moves forward with a permanent location for SPACECOM.”
Meanwhile, the status quo remains the status.
“This is an executive branch decision,” Tuberville said. “It was made by the by the (Department of Defense) two years ago by President Trump in his group. But politics turned its ugly face into the way of Space Command and now won’t allow it to happen. so hopefully they’ll come to realization that we need Space Command and we need it in the right place.
“It needs to be in Huntsville,” the senator added. “The second place would be Nebraska. The third place would be in San Antonio. I hate to tell Colorado but they didn’t even make the top three. So should be one of those places. It should be in Huntsville.”
©2023 Advance Local Media LLC.
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.