INTRODUCING A BILL TO POSTPONE THE 2005 ROUND OF DEFENSE BASE CLOSURE AND REALIGNMENT -- (Extensions of Remarks - May 20, 2005)
HON. RON PAUL
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
THURSDAY, MAY 19, 2005
Mr. PAUL. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce a bill to postpone the 2005 round of military base closure and realignment. This bill would postpone the conclusion of the Realignment report issued by the Department of Defense on 13 May 2005, as well as any preceding or subsequent plans that may ultimately be enacted to close or realign military bases on U.S. territory. This bill will postpone such closures and realignments until a specific set of criteria have been fulfilled, including until both the Defense Department and Congress have had the opportunity to fully study the recommendations and their implications for the national security and defense of the United States.
This round of base closure and realignment also should not go forward while we have hundreds of thousands of troops deployed overseas in major conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The constant rotation of troops and other personnel to these major theaters of operations has caused great disruption, logistical strain, and terrible burdens on our servicemembers, their families, and the military itself.
Also, we should not proceed with this round of base closures and realignments before the 2006 release of the Quadrennial Defense Review. Congress must have ample time to study the recommendations of the QDR before agreeing on any major closure and realignment strategy. To do otherwise just does not make any sense.
Mr. Speaker, for these and other reasons I feel it is essential-for the strength of our military, the effectiveness of our defense, and the security of all Americans-that we postpone this round of BRAC closings until we are able to satisfy the critical criteria outlined in this bill. I hope my colleagues will join me by supporting this legislation and I hope for its speedy consideration on the House Floor.