House Missile Defense Caucus Statements on Obama Administration’s Missile Defense Policy Shifts
Today the co-chairs of the House Missile Defense Caucus released the following statement after Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced a plan to add fourteen ground based interceptors to ballistic missile defense system.
“I strongly support the decision to increase the number of ground based interceptors in our missile defense system. The threats posed by North Korea and Iran are real, and as a government our first responsibility is to provide for the common defense. I also believe that we should accelerate work on another missile site in the eastern United States. However, I am concerned that the decision to restructure the SM3-IIB program may actually weaken our missile defense system against an Iranian threat. The decision to increase ground based interceptors should be only the first step toward rectifying the cuts in missile defense that the Obama Administration has made in the last four years. We must strengthen our defenses against the Iranian and North Korean threats and continue investing in new technologies that will help us defeat more sophisticated missiles.” – Congressman Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
“Drastic cuts to missile defense have been a hallmark of this Administration. However, it is both refreshing and heartening to see that the considerable threat posed to the United States by rogue nations like North Korea, Iran, and their proxies is finally being taken more seriously. It is also unfortunate that it has taken multiple missile tests by these same rogue nations for this Administration — led by the same President who in 2001 said ‘I don’t agree with missile defense’ — to realize that our missile defense systems, specifically our west coast missile defense sites that have long needed more Ground-Based Interceptors, are absolutely critical to the ongoing security of America.” – Congressman Trent Franks (AZ-08)
Note: Total cost for the Administration’s proposed changes is about $1 billion, and subject to Congressional approval.
The Missile Defense Caucus is a bipartisan group of almost forty members of the House of Representatives who support a strong missile defense system for the United States and our allies.