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The American People Have a Right to Know
Posted by Randy | March 09, 2012

Yesterday, the House Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, which I chair, held a hearing to examine the implications of two more rounds of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process, which was proposed in the President’s Fiscal Year 2013 budget, and is expected to be formally requested by the Administration in the next week.

Dr. Dorothy Robyn, the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Installations and Environment, said “Strategic and fiscal imperatives leave the department no alternative — we must close and realign military bases here in the United States.”

However, the administration has made these plans without providing any estimates of cost savings or other necessary details. Especially in light of the $487 billion in defense cuts already made and the specter of a further $500 billion reduction under sequestration, it is imperative that we know how this will impact our force structure in the near-term and long-term.

The bottom line is we need a lot more facts and rigorous analysis before we pass on another round of BRAC. I believe the American people have a right to know what these BRAC rounds will mean in the context of overall defense cuts – and it is unfair to wait until after the election to share that information.  

Watch my exchange with Dr. Robyn during the hearing yesterday in the video below:

Watch my full series of questions with the witnesses here and read my opening statement here.

Also, read this article about the hearing in the Washington Post.

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  • Thomas G commented on 3/12/2012
    Congressman, do you think it is unfair to the American people for the congress to refuse to even vote on the president's jobs bill that is fully paid for and submitted to you in September last year? You have been urged to respond to this direct question by many people on this blog for months and you refuse to address this persistent question of the constituents. Do you think it is fair to the country to refuse to implement many provisions of the Dodd-Frank law of the land that acts to prevent the very abuses that brought the economy to its knees? Do not the American people deserve a congress that will act? Do you honestly think it is fair to the American people to continue to support irresponsible tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires and then refuse to even show up to vote for the middle class tax cut extension? Do you actually think it is fair to the American people to blame the administration for the delays in the decision on the Keystone pipeline when it was the republican legislature that voted unamiously in Nebraska against the proposed route because of its threat to their vital water source in light that portions of the pipeline have already leaked 12 times in one year? Before you use the word fairness sir, and expect to be seen as credible, you need to begin responding to these questions and do a much better job of communicating all the facts on issues you present to us for comment. I can't even get you to take a position on increasing the minimum wage. Why is it so difficult to answer that question sir and why is it so difficult to simply acknowledge that the overwhelming majority of the people want the tax rates of millionaires and billionaires to be adjusted in light of the serious revenue matters facing the country? Another constitutent on one of the other columns pondered..."Do you think we're stupid?" We cannot even get an answer to that question.
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