Alabama’s Rogers seeks federal investigation into Space Command HQ decision
al.com August 24, 2023
(Tribune News Service) — U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, is calling for a federal investigation into the process leading to President Joe Biden’s decision to make permanent the U.S. Space Command headquarters in Colorado.
Factors the president used to make the decision were “never included in the (official) basing requirements,” Rogers said in an apparent reference to Alabama’s ban on abortion.
Rogers said decisions with national security implications and “significant economic interest” for the states involved should be made using a process “standardized, repeatable, transparent and deliberate.” The Pentagon has such a process using established public criteria and Alabama’s Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville ranked first among competing military installations in that process. Rogers called the president’s decision bypassing that process “anything but transparent.”
Rogers’ letter went to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) Comptroller General Gene Dodaro asking for a report that “at a minimum, answer(s) the following questions”:
• What were the requirements used during the initial selection process for USSPACECOM headquarters?
• Did those requirements change during the selection process either before GAO’s previous evaluation or afterwards?
• If they changed, what were the new factors?
• How did any new factors differ from original requirements? Who in DOD leadership directed those changes, or were these changes directed from elsewhere in the administration?
Rogers said the committee also wants to know the role of retiring Space Command top general Gen. James Dickinson. Dickinson is retiring from the service to live in Colorado, where he was born, and has bought a small ranch there.
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