Surviving the Election

A majority of the members of the Senate and House Armed Services Committees won back their seats during Tuesday’s election. Most notably, SASC Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) won despite contentious primary and general elections. His ally, Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), was not as lucky. New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan beat the incumbent by only 1,023 votes, according to a release. Of the four senators on SASC who were up for re-election, only Ayotte lost. HASC Chairman Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) and ranking member Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.) held onto their seats. Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.), an Air Force veteran and former A-10 pilot, also won. Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.), who lost a Senate race, and Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.), who lost in the primary, are among the HASC members who will not be returning. HASC member and Army veteran Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) won an Illinois Senate race. With the wins, McCain and Thornberry will be able to continue pursuing the Pentagon reforms and readiness efforts they are seeking to implement. (See also: Election Year Turbulence from the November/December 2016 issue of Air Force Magazine.)