Who is responsible for C-130s moving from Keesler AFB?

The Air Force’s decision to move C-130 transport aircraft from Keeler Air Force Base has become a political football in Mississippi’s 4th Congressional District.

In recent WLOX interviews, Former Rep. Gene Taylor blames incumbent Rep. Steven Palazzo’s reckless voting for defense budget cuts and Palazzo blames Taylor for the trillions of dollars in national debt racked-up during his tenure as 4th District Congressman.  Another candidate, Tom Carter, said that he’ll just make a phone call to his former colleague, Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee, to keep the planes there.

In 2011, national debt was labeled as the biggest threat to national security by then chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, ADM Mike Mullen.  Not surprisingly, DoD’s share of the U.S. budget is shrinking and the Air Force is likely making economic trade-offs:

US Spedning (1970 to 2040)

For his part, Palazzo has challenged the Air Force’s math.  And so has every other elected official that represents areas that could be impacted by proposed realignments.  If keeping C-130’s at Keesler AFB is the best decision strategically and financially, they should stay.  In an election year, what are the chances that politics don’t trump national security?

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