Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) blasted President Biden’s decision Monday to keep the headquarters of the Space Command in Colorado, overturning former President Trump’s decision to move it to Alabama.
“As soon as Joe Biden took office, he paused movement on that decision and inserted politics into what had been a fair and objective competition—not because the facts had changed, but because the political party of the sitting President had changed,” Tuberville said in his statement.
Tuberville is locked in a standoff with the Pentagon over its abortion policy, placing a hold on hundreds of Biden’s military nominations in protest.
Some officials have said Alabama’s restrictive abortions laws played into the Space Command HQ decision, though the White House said it was motivated entirely by concerns that a major move would undermine military readiness.
Tuberville wrote that it was “shameful” the Biden administration waited until Congress was in recess to make this decision, noting it came after the House and Senate passed versions of next year’s defense budget. The two chambers still need to hammer out a final version of the defense budget.
And he claimed that Colorado Springs did not even crack the top three sites for the headquarters in a review by the Air Force, trailing locations in Alabama, Nebraska and Texas.
“This decision to bypass the three most qualified sites looks like blatant patronage politics, and it sets a dangerous precedent that military bases are now to be used as rewards for political supporters rather than for our security,” he wrote.
Trump’s initial decision to move the HQ to Alabama also prompted claims of political motivations from Democrats. Alabama overwhelmingly voted for Trump in the 2020 election and has two GOP senators, while Colorado voted for Biden and has two Democratic senators.
Tuberville on Monday said the fight to bring the headquarters to Alabama was “not over,” adding he hopes House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) will continue an investigation into the matter.
“This is absolutely not over. I will continue to fight this as long as it takes to bring Space Command where it would be best served—Huntsville, Alabama,” he said.
Rogers said in a statement that he will continue the committee’s investigation into the relocation of the headquarters, also saying the “fight is far from over.”
“The Biden administration’s shameful delay to finalize the permanent basing decision for U.S. Space Command warranted the opening of a Congressional investigation,” Rogers said.
“I will continue this investigation to see if they intentionally misled the Armed Services Committee on their deliberate taxpayer-funded manipulation of the selection process. I will continue to hold the Biden administration accountable for their egregious political meddling in our national security.”
Other Alabama Republicans, including Sen. Katie Britt and Gov. Kay Ivey, also took aim at Biden’s decision Monday.
“President Biden has irresponsibly decided to yank a military decision out of the Air Force’s hands in the name of partisan politics,” Britt said in a statement. “Huntsville finished first in both the Air Force’s Evaluation Phase and Selection Phase, leaving no doubt that the Air Force’s decision to choose Redstone as the preferred basing location was correct purely on the merits.”
“The White House choosing to not locate Space Command Headquarters in Alabama – the rightful selection – is very simply the wrong decision for national security,” Ivey posted on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “The fact that a CNN reporter is who first delivered the news to Alabama should say all.”
Source: The Hill