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Alabama leaders react after Pence says Space Force in the process of being established

Vice President Mike Pence, while speaking alongside Secretary of Defense James Mattis at the Pentagon on Thursday morning, declared that “establishing the Space Force is an idea whose time has come.” The vice president explained the Pentagon, under Mattis’ leadership, has begun the process of establishing the Space Force as a sixth branch of the U.S. military.

Alabama could be set to benefit in a major way with the presence of Red Stone Arsenal in Huntsville.

This will still require action by Congress, which exclusively has the power to establish a new military branch.

Alabama leaders reacted to the breaking news on Thursday, sharing their elation on Twitter.

“I am thrilled about the news today. We in the House have been warning for years about the threats to our space assets and the unacceptably slow pace to develop more capable space systems,” Rep. Mike Rogers tweeted.

He added, “I look forward to continuing to work with the administration on the establishment of a much-needed independent Space Force and appreciate [President Trump’s] leadership on this vital issue to our National Security.”

Thank you for the shoutout @VP for the Redstone Arsenal facility in Huntsville, AL at the The Pentagon today. #alpolitics #SpaceForce pic.twitter.com/2ayVPM9OxV

“America’s military relies heavily on its space assets to secure our homeland against potential attackers,” Congressman Mo Brooks said in a statement. “In this age of highly advanced weaponry, many of our most lethal and crucial weapons systems depend on global positioning satellites to function properly, and Chinese and Russian anti-satellite weaponry threaten those assets. For this reason, a dedicated Space Force is critical to protecting America’s national security interests and freedoms against those who would destroy them.”

He added, “As a member of the House Armed Services Committee who has supported Space Force for years, I am pleased President Trump has aggressively pursued establishing Space Force as a sixth branch of the military. Vice-President Mike Pence today detailing the dire need for Space Force and describing what the Pentagon needs from Congress to stand up Space Force in the coming years is a welcome step in this process. Going forward, I’m committed to working with the President, my colleagues, and the Pentagon to ensure Space Force is adequately funded and equipped.”

This story will be updated with more comments and reactions as they come in.

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn