Colorado lawmakers invite VP Harris to tour space facilities
WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of lawmakers from Colorado in a June 9 letter urge Vice President Kamala Harris to visit military and space industry facilities in the state as she prepares to take over as chair of the National Space Council.
“As you work to identify the council’s priorities, we invite you to visit Colorado to experience firsthand the dynamism of our state’s private and public space industry,” the lawmakers wrote in the letter to Harris.
The letter was signed by Senators Michael Bennet (D) and John Hickenlooper (D), and Representatives Doug Lamborn (R), Joe Neguse (D), Jason Crow (D), Ed Perlmutter (D), Diana DeGette (D) and Ken Buck (R).
Colorado’s congressional delegation has been making a full-court press following the Air Force announcement in January that Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama, was selected as the home of U.S. Space Command headquarters, which is currently at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs.
Bennet and Hickenlooper complained that the Trump White House influenced the decision for political reasons and have asked President Biden to review the base selection process. Lamborn also requested reviews by the Pentagon inspector general and the Government Accountability Office.
“Colorado is the largest space economy per capita in the country. Our state is home to over 500 space-related companies and suppliers, including nine of the nation’s largest aerospace contractors,” says the letter. “Colorado aerospace companies directly employ more than 30,000 people, while an additional 200,000 work in space-related jobs.”
In the letter the lawmakers press their case that U.S. Space Command should stay in Colorado.
“Our state is home to the National Space Defense Center, U.S. Northern Command, North American Aerospace Defense Command, Cheyenne Mountain Air Station, Buckley Space Force Base, and the National Reconnaissance Office’s Aerospace Data Facility-Colorado. Eight of the nine current Space Force Deltas are based in Colorado,” the letter says.