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Slaughter Defends Niagara Air Base in House Speech

By Mark Scott

Washington, DC – Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-Rochester, says now is not the time to close military bases in the United States.

In remarks delivered on the House floor Wednesday, the Western New York Democrat criticized the Pentagon for not following the criteria the military developed to evaluate the importance of each base. She said decision-makers instead used their "collective judgement." Slaughter said that was especially costly to the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, which is on the closings list.

"I don't even know what collective judgement is supposed to mean," Slaughter said. "But I do know that at Niagara, thousands of people will be losing their jobs. A base is at risk that is highly ranked and performing the duties it was asked to undertake."

Slaughter also criticized the Department of Defense for failing to take into account the homeland security value of the bases being closed.