COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.– Former President Donald Trump said today in a phone interview with an Alabama-based radio program, “Space force – I sent to Alabama. I hope you know that…I single-handedly said ‘Let’s go to Alabama.’” Various local leaders around Colorado have released statements regarding these comments.
Mayor John Suthers of Colorado Springs, Colo., released this statement as follows:
“We have maintained throughout the process that the permanent basing decision for U.S. Space Command was not made on merit. The admission by former President Trump that he ‘single-handedly’ directed the move to Huntsville, Alabama, supports our position. Our local governments and our Congressional delegation will continue to press our case in Congress and at the White House to re-examine and ultimately overturn the move in the best interest of our nation.
Colorado Springs remains the best home for U.S. Space Command as supported by the criteria established by the U.S. Air Force.
Colorado Springs exclusively has the established workforce, infrastructure, collaborative bases and communications capabilities to continue this vital mission. We remain ready to continue to serve as our nation’s military space headquarters in the interest of security, efficiency and cost savings.”
U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper released the following statement:
“Former President Trump has admitted what we already knew: that he made a strictly political decision to move Space Command and completely disregarded both critical national security and budgetary considerations. This is exactly why we’ve called for a review and reconsideration of the decision. We look forward to the Air Force doing just that — looking at what is best for our national security — and making sure Space Command is located where it belongs, in Colorado Springs.”
In January, the Air Force announced that Huntsville, Alabama, would be the permanent headquarters of U.S. Space Command. Following this announcement, reports surfaced that President Trump had politicized the decision process to relocate Space Command from its provisional headquarters in Colorado Springs.
Earlier this year, Hickenlooper and Senator Michael Bennet led the entire Colorado Congressional Delegation in urging President Joe Biden to suspend the Trump administration’s decision to relocate U.S. Space Command until a thorough review of the decision was conducted.
In March, Hickenlooper, Bennet, and a bipartisan group of senators outlined recommendations for the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Inspector General (IG) to include in the investigation of the decision.
During a congressional hearing in April, General James H. Dickinson, Commander of Space Command, acknowledged that there are many unanswered questions about the move, including its costs and impact on workforce retention.
The El Paso County Board of Commissioners released the following statement:
El Paso County will continue to work with our local stakeholders and Congress to reverse the decision to move U.S. Space Command and support the country’s strategic defense needs. On its merits, it is obvious Space Command needs to stay in Colorado Springs. It makes no sense to spend billions of taxpayer dollars and gain no mission enhancement by moving Space Command from its current location, the home to many critical space missions. We look forward to a final decision from the Administration and Congress to keep Space Command where it is in Colorado.