Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), House Armed Services Committee ranking member since 2009, announced he “is seeking the chairmanship of the committee” when the Republicans take control the House in January. McKeon said his priorities for the next Congress, the 112th, are: ensuring deployed troops have the equipment and resources they need to be successful; building on the committee’s strong bipartisan tradition to support military personnel and their families; and investing in the necessary capabilities and force structure, “while mandating fiscal responsibility, accountability, and transparency” from the Pentagon. He said there is still work to be done this year during the lame-duck session. Republicans, he noted, “are committed” to passing a defense authorization bill for Fiscal 2011 “that is not weighed down by the current majority’s social agenda items.” Speaking of the authorization bill, read Money Talk.
The Collaborative Combat Aircraft will be operational in the late 2020s, several years before the Next-Generation Air Dominance family of systems, Air Force officials told the House Armed Services tactical aviation panel. The CCAs will first be “shooters,” then electronic warfare platforms, then sensors, in that order, they added.