May 28, 2021 / Defense/Veterans

McMorris Rodgers Advocates for Fairchild Air Force Base as Home for New Tanker Fleet

Washington, D.C. (May 28, 2021) – Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) this week took steps to advocate for Fairchild Air Force Base (AFB) to station the new KC-46A refueling tanker fleet. Cathy released the following statement with an update on her efforts:

“Ensuring Fairchild Air Force Base is equipped with the best refueling tanker fleet is one of my top priorities,” said Rodgers. “For years, I have advocated for the incredible men and women who serve selflessly on this base in Eastern Washington, and I will continue doing everything I can to advocate on their behalf. 

“I am encouraged by the conversations we had this week, and I remain optimistic that the Secretary of the Air Force will give thoughtful consideration to Fairchild. I strongly believe that tremendous community support – along with the leadership and dedication of Forward Fairchild – has helped distinguish our base from other bases across the country.

“Afterall, Fairchild has proven to be a center of excellence for the KC-135 fleet and is one of the most equipped in the world to support these new tankers.”

On Wednesday, Cathy attended a Forward Fairchild meeting to receive an update on the process of determining where the new KC-46A fleet will be based. Cathy expressed that she is going to do everything she can to ensure Fairchild AFB is selected, and solicited input from the group on how she can best help achieve this common goal.

On Thursday, Cathy had a phone call with members of the Fairchild AFB leadership team to discuss the selection process and share her support for Fairchild’s selection. 

Finally, today, Cathy spoke directly with the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations Robert E. Moriarty to learn more about the timeline for selection and advocate on Fairchild AFB’s behalf. 

Note: On May 19, it was announced that the current KC-135 tanker fleet at Fairchild Air Force Base could be retired. As a result, Fairchild AFB is being considered as the next base to station the new KC-46A refueling fleet. The Secretary of the Air Force will be selecting the preferred base by the end of this year.