June 17, 2021

At SASC Hearing, Duckworth Secures Commitments from General Brown on Air Force Logistics and Capacity Issues


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — During a U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) hearing today, combat Veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) secured commitments from General Charles Brown, Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force, to address the gap in advanced air mobility capability that is suitable for distributed warfare in the Indo-Pacific and to work with the National Guard on C-130 capacity issues. Duckworth served in the Reserve Forces for 23 years and is Chair of the SASC Airland Subcommittee. Video of the Senator’s remarks can be found here.

Key quotes:

  • “As the Air Force modernizes its platforms to meet the demands of future conflict, particularly the possibility of a contested logistics environment in the Indo-Pacific region, we must consider the evolution of our air mobility and other combat support functions, in addition to our combat capabilities.”
  • “I’m actually pretty alarmed that the Air Force plans to continue C-130 divestment from the Guard and Reserve, yet has not created a plan to replace the C-130 itself. Eliminating enduring platforms without even beginning to design their replacement is a huge gamble.”
  • “I understand that the Air Force has difficult decisions to make in how it manages its budget and the increasing cost of maintaining older aircraft. I at one point flew the oldest Black Hawk in the entire army inventory... I’ve heard however from my TAG about how concerned he is that the Illinois Air National Guard will not be able to fulfill its duties to Illinois and to the country if there are further C-130 divestments without replacement platforms.”

Duckworth was one of the first handful of Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She served in the Reserve Forces for 23 years before retiring from military service in 2014 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. She served on the House Armed Services Committee (HASC) during her four years serving in the U.S. House of Representatives.