Decision to move Space Command to Huntsville potentially halted

U.S. Officials believe that the Biden Administration is planning to stop the plans to move U.S. Space Command’s Headquarters from Colorado to Alabama.
Published: May. 15, 2023 at 7:59 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - U.S. Officials believe that the Biden Administration is planning to stop the plans to move U.S. Space Command’s Headquarters from Colorado to Alabama, according to an NBC report.

As quoted from the report:

“The belief is they are delaying any move because of the abortion issue,” one U.S. official said, referring to the White House.

In contrast, the White House said Alabama’s abortion ban was not a factor in the ongoing review of the decision to have Spacecom’s headquarters moved to Huntsville.

“A White House official said that access to reproductive health care does not weigh in to making the decision about location,” the report read.

Factors that are weighed in when deciding on the location of a military command headquarters include access to healthcare, room for growth, access to housing, proximity to airports, cost and overall quality of life.

Administration officials say that the potential halt has nothing to do with Alabama (R) Sen. Tommy Tuberville who has blocked at least 234 of Biden’s military nominations in protest against the Pentagon’s abortion policy. Aside from that, an anonymous U.S. official says, “He’s not helping.”

According to the NBC report, The White House is “trying to delay as much as possible” before announcing a final decision because “they don’t want to aggravate Tuberville even more.”

Two years ago, the secretary of the Air Force announced that Spacecom would move from its temporary home in Colorado Springs. U.S. Officials also said that there was no comparison when it came to choosing Huntsville over Colorado Springs but the report states that 64% of Spacecom’s authorized personnel already live in Colorado.

Although the abortion ban is not a factor in the ongoing reviews, it is believed that “Alabama’s abortion law would restrict Spacecom personnel’s access to reproductive health care and could potentially hurt efforts to attract personnel.”

According to a spokesperson with Redstone Arsenal, more than 98% of the nearly 44,000 employees on the base are civilians who live off-post and use civilian medical care. The base does have Fox Army Health Care and it is a “medical facility for prescriptions and basic services that caters mostly to retirees in the area.

This means that any service member and dependents assigned there would primarily use civilian medical care and would be subject to Alabama’s abortion law.

Alabama leaders released the following statements on this potential halt in plans:

“When the Air Force looked at what was in the best interest of national security, they chose Redstone Arsenal to house U.S. Space Command headquarters. Any deviation from that is a slight against those serving in uniform. I’ve seen all the reviews and reports on the basing process – but don’t remember access to late-term abortions being one of the 21 criteria used to evaluate the sites.

The White House’s inaction and handwringing have brought the consequence of a more than two-year delay for the final basing decision for Space Command. Each passing day is another reminder that the Biden Administration is willing to prioritize bowing down to political pressure over what is best for the military and national defense.

If it is now Department of Defense policy to punish conservative states implementing the will of their voters, I’d suggest that Texas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Florida, Tennessee, Arizona, Louisiana, Wyoming, Arkansas, Kentucky, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Idaho, and Utah start calling the Pentagon to ask if they should be worried about their installations.”

(R) Rep. Dale Strong

President Biden’s plans would irresponsibly yank a military decision out of the Air Force’s hands in the name of partisan politics. 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. That decision should remain in the Air Force’s purview. Instead, President Biden is now trying to hand the Gold Medal to the fifth-place finisher. The President’s blatant prioritization of partisan political considerations at the expense of our national security, military modernization, and force readiness is a disservice and a dishonor to his oath of office as our nation’s Commander-in-Chief. Locating the permanent Space Command Headquarters on Redstone Arsenal undoubtedly remains in the best national security interest of the United States. President Biden should allow the Air Force to proceed with doing its job. Alabama’s world-class aerospace and defense workforce, capabilities, and synergies stand ready to fulfill the mission and strengthen our national security long into the future.”

(R) Sen. Katie Britt

Congressman Aderholt questions Air Force Secretary on Space Command Location.



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