Amendment Would Allow A-10 Jets To Continue Fying At Davis-Monthan Air Force Base

May 08, 2014

KJZZ News
U.S. Democratic Congressman Ron Barber Fights to Keep Jets Flying at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base

A-10 attack aircraft could continue flying temporarily at Tucson’s Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.   A key committee has approved a measure by Arizona Congressman Ron Barber that would extend A-10 funding for another year.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel wants to retire the A-10 to reduce military spending.  But, Tucson officials are worried that would be a major blow to Davis-Monthan, where the jets are based.  Tucson’s mayor said the base contributes a billion dollars a year to southern Arizona’s economy.  Barber said the A-10s, which were designed to support ground troops, should stay online until the Air Force’s new F-35 fighters are ready to go.

"This is a proven platform to protect our troops in battle.  In Afghanistan the troops told me keep the A-10 flying.  There’s no other fixed wing aircraft that does the job that the A-10 can do” Barber told Congress.

The House Armed Services committee passed Barber’s amendment Wednesday night by a vote of 41-to-20.  Opponents said funding the A-10 takes money away from other defense operations that include pulling U.S. troops out of Afghanistan next year.