Sunday, August 28, 2005

A Federal Right to Military Bases?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Governors and legislators from several U.S. states are vowing to fight proposed Pentagon cutbacks at Air National Guard bases after a military review commission approved stripping aircraft from dozens of units.

In one contentious move, the independent panel reviewing proposed military base cutbacks voted on Friday to close the Willow Grove Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base near Philadelphia. That came despite a federal court ruling barring deactivation of a Guard unit at the base without Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell's consent.

The commission changed wording in its motion to leave the Pennsylvania Air National Guard 111th Fighter Wing intact but ordered it stripped of its A-10 attack jets.

Rendell, who argued the U.S. Constitution grants states the right to maintain militias, reacted with defiance.

"Unless they get the (federal court) decision overturned, no one is going anywhere," the Democratic governor said...

If Pennsylvania thinks its so important to have a militia with A-10 attack jets, why exactly does that mean the federal government has to provide them?

Other states had similar reactions:

In Missouri, Republican Gov. Matt Blunt ordered the state's attorney general to sue the Pentagon and the commission for moving Guard fighters from St. Louis.

Massachusetts Democratic Rep. William Delahunt said if the state exhausted its legal options to save the Otis Air National Guard Base on Cape Cod, he would seek to defeat the base closing recommendations legislatively.

Sue first, deliberate later.
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich pledged to continue his court fight against the move of F-16 fighters out of Springfield, Illinois, which he said would "impact the safety and security of the entire Midwest."
Yeah, next time the Canadians invade the planes will be... closer to the front.

If states want these planes so bad, why don't they pay for them?


Lady Jane said...


The other day in the paper there was a story about this whole thing. Our illegitimate governor, Christine "Chris" Gregoire, said she was going to write the Pentagon (or whomever) and say she hasn't given her consent that aircraft be moved from Fairchild Airforce Base.

I wasn't aware she had jurisdiction over federally funded aircraft. And anyway, she does not have the "consent" of the people of Washington to do anything, because she lost the governor's race.

April said...

What is with this current view of courts being the first option before legislation? I get the feeling that legislatures are too worried about getting re-elected to want to legislate anything and would rather have the court system take care of things. At least the courts are starting to say no in a few areas (although not in our northeastern states).

Nick said...

Congress did the same thing with campaign finance "reform" but the Court let it by - and then they complain when the Supreme Court strikes down laws other than the ones that were passed to be struck down.