Senators respond to deactivation of 50 Malmstrom missiles

(GREAT FALLS, Mont.) – Senators Max Baucus and Jon Tester today released the following joint statement in response to a decision by the U.S. Air Force to deactivate 50 of the 200 Minuteman III missiles maintained in north-central Montana by Malmstrom Air Force Base:

"We are upset and disappointed by this decision.  It is the final step of an unfortunate plan that has been in the works for two years.  For months we have been in close contact with the Air Force, making it very clear that we do not support any plan to remove missiles from Montana.

Now, we are committed to redoubling our efforts to secure a new mission for Malmstrom—one that strengthens the security of our northern border, the safety of our country, and the livelihood and economies of communities across Montana.  We will continue to look for every opportunity to keep Malmstrom at the heart of our nation's military.

As this transition moves forward, we stand by Col. Finan and all of Team Malmstrom—the hardest-working and most dedicated crew of airmen around."