Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators John Hickenlooper and Michael Bennet released the following statement after the senators met with Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall to discuss the previous administration’s decision to move U.S. Space Command from Colorado to Alabama:
“Space Command must remain in Colorado. The previous administration’s untested basing process for U.S. Space Command lacked transparency and ignored national security and cost concerns. Chief among these concerns is the ability to reach Full Operational Capability as soon as possible. Both the reports from the Department of Defense Inspector General and Government Accountability Office affirm our doubts about the accuracy and credibility of the decision-making process. We underscored those concerns with Secretary Kendall.
“Our national security must be the key consideration for selecting a permanent headquarters for U.S. Space Command. According to press reports, senior military leaders identified Peterson Space Force Base as their preferred choice for the headquarters because of its unique ability to reach Full Operational Capability faster than other candidate bases. As Vladimir Putin continues to wage war on Ukraine, and China expands its influence in space, we cannot afford to delay FOC at Space Command. Relocating the mission will only serve our adversaries.
“We urged Secretary Kendall to review the DOD IG and GAO findings, and make a decision that prioritizes our nation’s national security and mission in space. Any fair and well-informed process will conclude that Space Command should remain permanently based at Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado.”
In December 2020, U.S. Senators John Hickenlooper and Michael Bennet joined more than 600 state, federal, local, county and municipal officials, businesspeople, philanthropists, civic leaders, military officials, entrepreneurs and Coloradans from across the state in a letter urging Trump to keep the Command in the Centennial State.
In January 2021, following the relocation announcement, Hickenlooper and Bennet released a statement denouncing the decision and expressing concern that the Trump White House influenced the decision for political reasons.
In January 2021, Hickenlooper and Bennet also led a letter from the entire Colorado Congressional Delegation that urged President Joe Biden to suspend the Trump Administration’s decision to move U.S. Space Command from Colorado Springs, Colorado, to Huntsville, Alabama until the administration conducts a thorough review.
In June 2021, Hickenlooper, Bennet, and U.S. Representatives Jason Crow and Doug Lamborn, and a bipartisan majority of the Colorado Congressional Delegation invited Vice President Kamala Harris to visit Colorado and its thriving space industry.
In September 2021, Hickenlooper, Bennet, Crow, Lamborn and a group of bipartisan members of the Colorado Congressional Delegation sent a letter to Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall urging him to suspend the Trump Administration’s decision to move U.S. Space Command from Colorado Springs, Colorado, to Huntsville, Alabama until the administration conducts a thorough review.
In March 2022, Hickenlooper and Bennet announced support from thirteen leading aerospace companies and accelerators to keep U.S. Space Command in Colorado due in large part to the state’s commanding aerospace industry, which supports U.S. defense and space missions.
Recently, Hickenlooper and Bennet led a letter from the entire Colorado Congressional Delegation calling on President Joe Biden to ensure the U.S. Space Command basing decision takes into account national security and cost implications.