It’s 60 More

At least one Senator expects to hear Air Force Gen. Norton Schwartz state his preference for 60 more F-22s during Congressional hearings. Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), vocal F-22 supporter, said Wednesday during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Michael Mullen that he had spoken with Schwartz who “has told me that his military requirement is for 243.” Chambliss added that Schwartz “would testify to that publicly, which I expect him to do next week.” Defense Secretary Robert Gates has said that the Air Force leadership is on board with the decision to limit Raptor production to 187 aircraft, but he also told lawmakers during a May 13 hearing (see above) that they could expect “candor” from the service chiefs.