Trump against F-35 program; Alaskan delegates think he’ll come around

An F-35 flies over Florida (U.S. Air Force photo)
An F-35 flies over Florida (U.S. Air Force photo)

Alaska’s Congressional delegation is largely unconcerned about President-elect Donald Trump’s criticism of the $400 billion dollar F-35 fighter jet program.

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Senator Lisa Murkowski and Representative Don Young issued statements expressing confidence Trump will see the value of the F-35 program after Inauguration Day.

A statement from Senator Dan Sullivan emphasized the tactical benefits of the F-35s. Though he added Trump raises legitimate concerns over costs and delays.

By 2022, Eielson Air Force Base is slated to host 54 F-35s, bringing an additional 25 hundred personnel and up to $500 million in new construction.

It’s not clear what prompted Trump to tweet about the F-35 on Monday. However, that morning several national news outlets reported President Obama’s defense secretary was in Israel for a ceremony to mark the delivery of that country’s first F-35s.