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Democratic Legislators Welcome Potential for F-35s to Come to Alaska

JUNEAU – Today, Representative David Guttenberg (D-Fairbanks), Representative Scott Kawasaki (D-Fairbanks) and Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage), and Senator Bill Wielechowski (D-Anchorage) welcomed the Pentagon’s announcement that Eielson Air Force Base outside Fairbanks and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) in Anchorage are two of the five Pacific military bases the Air Force is considering to station the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

“Alaska’s north Pacific location makes it an excellent strategic choice for stationing the F-35s,” said Guttenberg. “Whether they land in Anchorage or Fairbanks, the Air Force and our nation will be well-served by stationing these cutting-edge aircraft in Alaska.”

“Alaska is finally being recognized for its strategic importance and location,” Kawasaki said. “With the opening of the Arctic and ongoing conflicts Asia and the Pacific arena, it makes sense that our military continues to grow here.”

“Working together with our Congressional delegation, we have advanced our position as a leading location for the F-35s.  This supports our strong position as a superpower for the Asia-Pacific Theater and the Obama administration’s pivot to Asia.  Moving F-35s to Alaska will increase our military preparedness for defending our state and nation,” said Tarr, a member of the Joint Armed Services Committee. “Fairbanks, Anchorage, and all of Alaska have worked together to support our military bases, and we look forward to hosting the F35s wherever they may land in Alaska.”

“Alaska would be an ideal home for the F35s,” said Wielechowski, also a member of the Joint Armed Services Committee. “Our training ranges are the best in the world and provide a superior training experience.”

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