Sen. Jerry Moran

McConnell upgrades good for military

U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and United States Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James visited McConnell Air Force Base to spend time with the Airmen of the 22nd and 931st Air Refueling Wings, the 184th Intelligence Wing, the 177th Information Aggressor Squadron, and to tour newly constructed facilities to support the arrival of KC-46A tankers.

“The men and women at McConnell make invaluable contributions to both the strength of our Air Force on a global scale and to the Wichita community,” said Sen. Moran. “I’m pleased that Secretary James could visit today to see firsthand the efforts of those on the base and especially the new facilities the base is constructing in preparation for the KC-46A tankers.”

“I had a wonderful trip to McConnell learning about the important work being conducted by our total force Airmen at the 22 ARW, 931 ARW and 184 IW,” Sec. James said. “The support they receive from the Wichita community is unprecedented and knowing our Airmen and their families are taking care of them is priceless.”

Sec. James is the 23rd Secretary of the Air Force and has been serving in the role since 2013. She has more than 30 years of homeland security and national defense experience, both in the federal government and in the private sector.

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, Sen. Moran has worked to secure funding for important military construction projects in fiscal year 2017 to prepare McConnell Air Force Base for the arrival of KC-46A tankers, including:

A new Air Traffic Control Tower: $11.2 million for construction KC-46A Alter Flight Simulator Buildings: $3 million for flight simulator buildings in preparation for the KC-46A tankers A new KC-46A ADAL Taxiway Delta: $5.6 million for construction

Since 1941, McConnell Air Force Base has been an instrumental part of the Wichita community. The base employs more than 17,000 people, military and civilian, and last year it had an overall impact of more than $520 million on our local economy. McConnell supports all branches of the military and allied partners, refueling off of either coast and around the world every day.

Congressman Mike Pompeo

Label law good for farmers

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) released the following statement in response to President Obama signing into law S. 764. Congressman Pompeo’s Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2015, H.R. 1599, which served as the basis for S. 764, passed the House of Representatives on July 23, 2015.

“With this new law — which I ushered through the House of Representatives — farmers will be able to continue to produce safe food for Kansans and the world, as they have for decades, using the technology that has allowed them to cost-effectively increase crop yields, while reducing water and pesticide use. Radical, anti-science advocates throughout the country will no longer have the ability to disrupt the market and raise food prices by creating a patch-work of misguided state and local food labeling laws. Had we not acted, the results would have been devastating for Kansas farmers, rural communities, and families.

“As a result of this new law, we will now have a national standard for the use of these important technologies. Every citizen will continue to be able to know what is in their food and permit the government to stay out of the way of these consumer choices. This new law is a clear victory for Kansas farmers, our agricultural community, and everyone who wants to provide safe and affordable food.”

Iran deal getting worse

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) responded to a speech by the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. Khamenei issued his harshest criticism of the Iran nuclear deal to date, castigating the U.S. for not doing enough for Iran and suggesting his country might be forced to pull out of the deal.

“The Ayatollah, and other senior Iranian leaders, continue to make clear their hostility toward the U.S. and their intention to walk away from the nuclear deal if we refuse to provide assistance beyond what is required in the agreement,” Pompeo said. “President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton seem willing to comply with these demands. Indeed, Secretary of State John Kerry is carrying water for the Iranians around the world — intimidating foreign countries into providing support to Iran that exceeds the deal’s requirements. Obama, Clinton and Kerry are deaf to the Iranians’ shouts of ‘death to America’ — and willing to do nearly anything for the Iranians — in order to preserve what they view as their crowning achievement, the deal with Ayatollah Khamenei.

“To the people of Iran: it is clear that in order to grow your economy and develop democratic traditions, you need new leaders — leaders who will prioritize you and not send your money to terrorist groups and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

“To the Ayatollah: you approved of the deal as written. Do not come to American taxpayers seeking additional welfare for your country, beyond the $150 billion that was, unfortunately, provided to you as part of the deal.

“To President Obama and Secretary Kerry: please focus on American safety and security, not on preserving this deal at any cost. Iran is harboring al-Qaeda terrorists, taking U.S. citizens hostage and using its forces to foment destruction around the globe. Stop using U.S. taxpayer dollars to purchase goods from Iran and to license the sale of potential military tools, like aircraft. It is not your role to act as agents of the Iranian Chamber of Commerce. America’s security depends on you acknowledging that this agreement has not changed Iran’s behavior in any material way.

Ploughshares must be honest

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) sent a letter to Joseph Cirincione, President of the Ploughshares Fund, demanding answers regarding the 501 (c)(3)’s previously undisclosed financial contributions to National Public Radio. The donations came at a time when the Obama administration was trying to sell the nuclear deal to the American public, and when Mr. Cirincione appeared on NPR personally to promote the nuclear deal.

Pompeo said the following about his letter to the President of the Ploughshares Fund:

“The Iran nuclear deal is arguably our country’s most significant foreign policy decision in the last five years. Quite frankly, it is our largest foreign policy blunder. Obama administration officials have recently confirmed it took incredible levels of deceit — through various media channels — to sell the Iran nuclear deal to the American people. One of these channels is the Ploughshares Fund.

“These suspicious actions raise questions about the undue influence that Ploughshares had during the sale of the deal — especially as the President of Ploughshares appeared on NPR to promote the Iran deal. Therefore, I’m asking Mr. Cirincione to level with the American people. He needs to disclose all pertinent information and answer my simple questions regarding his organization’s highly questionable relationship with taxpayer-funded public radio.”

Previously, Congressman Pompeo sent a similar letter to Jarl Mohn, President and CEO of NPR, calling for an independent investigation into the relationship between Ploughshares and NPR. The subsequent NPR Ombudsman’s report failed to answer the core questions of concern.

Iran payments shady at best

Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-Kansas) released the following statement regarding new reports that $400 million in cash was sent to Iran at the same time American hostages were being released.

“The moment President Obama announced he was paying Iran $1.7 billion, I launched an inquiry — asking specific questions about this money. The State Department refused to answer me, but we have continued pushing, questioning officials in classified and unclassified settings. Thanks to the work of our independent press, we now have additional information that neither Iran nor the Obama administration wanted to reveal.

“Reports of the U.S. paying Iran $400 million in pallets of cash, using other currencies in order to circumvent American law, is something of Hollywood films — and is reminiscent of the Iran Contra scandal. Have we not learned we cannot trust the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism? To tell the American people that the payment of $1.7 billion at the same time as four American hostages were released was just coincidence insults our common sense and borders on lawlessness. The result? Three more Americans now sit languishing in Iranian prisons.”