Sullivan Raises Alarm Over Biden Administration Telling Military To Prioritize Climate Agenda, Not Readiness

WASHINGTON—In an interview on Fox News Channel, Senator Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), raised alarm over the Biden administration’s political appointees in the Department of Defense (DOD) prioritizing their climate agenda over military readiness and lethality. Senator Sullivan’s interview occurred a week after he questioned Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro and Assistant Navy Secretary Meredith Berger on why the Navy is breaking a statutory mandate to maintain a minimum of 31 operational amphibious warships, and is instead prioritizing the administration’s climate goals.

Senator Sullivan also called on Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to bring the House-passed Lower Energy Costs Act up for a vote on the Senate floor. The Lower Energy Costs Act would provide “important permitting reform,” lower energy costs, help restore energy independence, and would pass in the Senate, Senator Sullivan said. Senator Sullivan’s call to action comes as gas prices reached a 5-month high, at $3.66 per gallon on average nationally, and $3.97 in Alaska, and energy costs are up 36 percent since President Biden took office.

Sullivan: The Biden Administration Is Having The U.S. Navy Prioritize Climate Change Over the Readiness Of The Fleet

SANDRA SMITH: Alaska Republican Senator and Senate Armed Services Committee member, Dan Sullivan joins us now. How is that already happening? Senator, welcome.

SENATOR SULLIVAN: Well, Sandra, last week the Secretary of the Navy and some of his assistant secretaries testified in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and it was a disaster because what we saw was the secretary and some of his assistant secretaries are prioritizing climate change, believe it or not, in the Navy over the readiness of the fleet. That is just music to the ears of our adversaries, whether it's Xi Jinping or Putin. It's a complete screw up of the priorities of our military. The Secretary of the Navy got out his climate action plan well over a year ago and just got his 30-year shipbuilding plan to the Congress the night before the hearing. And, then, on another issue that I care deeply about, this requirement that they have to have 31 amphibious ships so the Marines can do force projection—kick in the door capability all over the world—he came to the Congress last week and said, we're not going to do that. We're not going to meet a requirement in the law. But he said climate change is one of his top priorities. Again, this is music to the ears of America's enemies.

Sullivan: The Biden Administration Is Beholden To The Far Left On So Many Issues, Especially The Military

SMITH: Why is this happening? Why are we allowing climate change to take priority in our U.S. military?

SULLIVAN: Well, we're not allowing it, right? I pounded the heck out of him and his assistant secretary before the readiness subcommittee last week. But it's happening because this administration is so beholden to the far left on so many issues. It's not just with regard to focusing on climate change. The Biden administration's military budget that they proposed to Congress the last three years, every time, the budget shrinks the military. This year's budget, Sandra, if you can believe it, shrinks the Navy, shrinks the Army, and shrinks the Marine Corps. And, yet, the military leaders are saying this is some of the most dangerous times we've seen since World War II. But we're shrinking our military and focusing on climate change. That makes no sense. And, again, the adversaries of America are the ones who are celebrating this.

Sullivan: Schumer Needs to Let the Senate Vote on the Lower Energy Costs Act

SMITH: We certainly sense the urgency in your voice on this matter. At the same time, some of these far-left Democrats, like AOC and others, are reintroducing this trillion-dollar Green New Deal that would, by the way—it calls for the end of fossil fuels. You think about that in the context of everything that you have just said and what that does to our positioning with some of our adversaries that then would push us to be more reliant on them for our fossil fuels. If we don't get it here, we're going to get it somewhere else. We have not seen that we are ready for that transition to electric vehicles, for example, in this country.

SULLIVAN: You are absolutely right. This is one of the huge contrasts between Republicans and Democrats. And, to your point and what I always say, one of our great strategic advantages over our adversaries is American energy dominance. We should be focused on American energy independence, all-of-the-above energy. What you see with the Green New Deal, which they are all celebrating, is this going to unilaterally disarm one of these great strategic advantages we have, American energy, and drive up costs on working families. The better bill, by far, is the Lower American Energy Costs bill that Speaker McCarthy and House Republicans just introduced and passed. That's all-of-the-above energy, it’s important permitting reform so we can bring projects online quickly. And Chuck Schumer needs to bring that to the Senate. By the way, Sandra, that would pass in a bipartisan way in the U.S. Senate. Schumer's afraid to do it. You know, if they bring the Green New Deal that'll get crushed in the Senate and the House, but it just shows the difference between the two parties on one of the most critical issues facing our country: American energy independence and American energy dominance.

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