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President-elect Trump Promises “Big Things” for the F-35

January 12, 2017 By Staff
President-elect Trump Promises “Big Things” for the F-35

The F-35 program is one of the many defense programs vital to Connecticut’s businesses.

In President-elect Trump’s first press conference since July 2016, the incoming commander-in-chief promised “big things” when talking about the F-35 program.

While just last year Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan, the program’s leader, said the “program is not out of control,” it’s no secret that the F-35 is behind schedule and over budget:

About that development program, though. According to Aviation Week and Space Technology, the Pentagon believes the F-35 will be delayed—again—and cost another $530 million over budget. The F-35 is already at least five years behind schedule and more than $13 billion over budget.

The F-35’s performance has also been lackluster, leaving America’s taxpayers wondering about the value of the most expensive weapon system ever built:

The F-35 engines are built by East Hartford-based Pratt & Whitney, a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp. The engine had issues, “not performing at expected levels” early last year.

In Connecticut, there is no doubt the state thrives from Washington’s defense programs – so much so that Governor Malloy focused his January State of the State address on lauding Connecticut’s role in American weapons manufacturing.

Connecticut officials have been quick to defend the F-35 program. Senator Blumenthal called the program “vital” to America’s national defense:

Blumenthal, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, which uses a Pratt & Whitney engine, employs 2,000 men and women in Connecticut. He said the program is an important “job creator and sustainer in Connecticut,” but equally if not more important it’s “vital” to America’s national defense.

The F-35 program is one of the many defense programs vital to Connecticut’s businesses.

As Connecticut faces a budget crisis and an economic grind, defense programs are more important now than ever for Connecticut’s economic health.