(UNEDITED) Mr. Ernst...are you kidding? Your July 26 letter suggesting Senators Hatch and Bennett had little impact on the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process is naÃØve at best. I served as the President of the Utah Defense Alliance during the past two BRAC rounds and I know first-hand what Utah's Senators did for Hill AFB. I was in the room when a top ranking four-star Air Force general looked at Governor Leavitt and Utah's Congressional delegation and said "If I have to pick a base to close for BRAC it will be Hill AFB because it is the most politically expedient." BRAC free from politics....hah!
Thank goodness we had a tenacious Senator Hatch willing to fight for defense jobs in Utah. To say he was instrumental to the success of Hill AFB's survival is an understatement...I know because I was there.
Another BRAC is probably two years away; weapon systems and programs important to the security of our nation (and coincidentally HAFB) are being cut. Reorganization efforts by the Department of Defense to move jobs out of Utah are a constant challenge. For the 26,000 base workers and the nearly 3 billion dollar economic impact Utah enjoys because of Hill AFB, I say keep up the good work and THANK YOU Senator Hatch!