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What if John McCain won the Washington primary in 2000 and went on to win the White House?
In a gallery of photos hanging on the wall of a cavernous World War II-era hangar at Fairchild Air Force Base, Lt. Gen. Giovanni Tuck’s picture shows him smiling, between similarly beaming photos of Gen. Carlton Everhart and Col. Ryan Samuelson. The placement is not unintentional. Samuelson, commander of the base, reports to Tuck, who reports to Everhart, commander of the Air Mobility Command. The chain of command continues as, just three photos away, appears Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Then President Donald Trump.
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell tell the Air Force it should send reassigned tankers to Fairchild.
Even though Fairchild wasn’t chosen for the Air Force’s next-generation refueling tankers, officials say the base could end up with more planes and people.
Local leaders appeared more sanguine, pivoting from the prospect of landing the new tankers to the possibility of getting more of the old ones.
Fairchild Air Force Base has come up short a second time in a bid to host next-generation aerial tankers, leaving Sen. Patty Murray and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers to question the way the Air Force made its choice.
The Air Force will hold a hearing Thursday in Spokane as it takes another look at Fairchild as a home for the nation’s new air refueling tanker.
The entire Washington congressional delegation sent the Air Force secretary a letter promoting Fairchild as the next home for the new KC-46A tanker.
The Spokane military installation was turned down in 2013 to bed down the KC-46A Pegasus in favor of a Kansas base closer to where the new jets were manufactured. A final decision on where the tankers will be stationed is expected by the end of the year.
It’s troubling that the Air Force officials would change criteria without being transparent. They know communities make critical decisions aimed at preserving air bases.
The competition to be the next home to the new air-refueling tanker got significantly stiffer this year and supporters of Fairchild Air Force Base are concerned the rules were changed in the middle of the game
Anyone holding out hope that the first group of new air-refueling tankers would be located at Fairchild Air Force Base can give it up. Pegasus won’t be landing on the West Plains anytime soon. The Air Force confirmed Wednesday the first new KC-46As will go into regular service at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. McConnell was named the Air Force’s preferred choice for the first operational KC-46A tanker unit last May, with Fairchild as its backup.
Although the Air Force studied four bases as possible first homes for the KC-46A, Fairchild and McConnell Air Force bases would have the lowest costs, see the smallest number of personnel changes and need the least amount of construction. Here are some differences listed in the draft environmental impact statement for bringing the first wing of new tankers to Fairchild and McConnell.
Sending the first squadron of KC-46A tankers to Fairchild Air Force Base would have provided a $292 million boost to the local economy from new construction and added more than 400 personnel to the West Plains military installation. But it would have cost U.S. taxpayers more money and caused more disruptions than sending them to McConnell Air Force Base, which is the Pentagon’s preferred location to be the first home for the new plane, a study of the different options shows.
Turns out the most important thing in becoming the first base for the Air Force’s new air refueling tanker is the same as the most important thing in real estate: Location, location, location. Fairchild Air Force Base lost out Wednesday to McConnell Air Force Base near Wichita, Kan., because McConnell had a better location, according to the scoring system the military used to make its decision.
Wichita’s McConnell Air Force Base has been selected over Fairchild Air Force Base and two others to be the main operating base for the Air Force’s new KC-46A air refueling tanker.
The Air Force will discuss the possible effects of sending its first new air-refueling tankers to its base on the West Plains at a meeting next Tuesday. A session described as a drop-in open house scoping meeting will allow the military to show the public what it would mean to have Fairchild Air Force Base as the first main operating base for the new KC-46A and let members of the public say what they think about it.
Spokane will have a special type of "show and tell" next Tuesday on the possibility of the Air Force sending its first new air-refueling tankers to Fairchild Air Force Base.
Fairchild Air Force Base is on the short list to be the first home for the nation’s newest air refueling tanker. The Air Force said Fairchild and three other bases will be studied for the selection of the facility to “bed down” the first KC-46A refueling jets when they roll off the assembly line later this decade.