GOP senators voted to let Trump rob millions of dollars from military families in Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, and North Carolina.
When it comes to choosing between military families in their own state or pledging their loyalty to Trump, many vulnerable Republican senators chose Trump.
On Monday, Sen. Jack Reed (D-CT) unveiled a list of military projects Trump may steal from to pay for his border wall, including more than millions of dollars from military bases in Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, and North Carolina. Each of those states has a Republican senator running for re-election in 2020, and yet they still voted to let Trump rob military families in their own backyard.
After Trump failed in his efforts to get Congress to pay for a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, he made up a fake national emergency at the southern border. In doing so, he planned to steal money from military projects, defying the will of Congress and possibly the Constitution.
In Arizona, Sen. Martha McSally was one of those who picked Trump, voting to allow him to swipe up to $150 million from military bases in her state. McSally risked funding for five projects at four locations, including $40 million for two F-35 related projects at Luke Air Force Base.
Just last month, McSally bragged to a local radio station that she has "fought for Luke Air Force Base." But when Trump demanded that McSally prove her loyalty to him, she promptly gave up that fight in order to do Trump's bidding.
In Colorado, embattled Sen. Cory Gardner rankled past supporters by siding with Trump on the fake national emergency. With his vote, Gardner may have cost Fort Carson $77 million desperately needed for upgrades. The money was intended to "provide troops with a long-awaited, improved vehicle maintenance shop to repair the post's aging fleet of trucks, tanks and Humvees."
Instead, Gardner wants Trump to steal it for a border wall. Gardner's inability to stand up for his own state led one hometown newspaper to call its 2014 endorsement of Gardner a mistake.
In Georgia, Sen. David Perdue is completely supportive of Trump's desire to take up to $260 million from military bases in his state and use it for a border wall. Trump theft could include "$99 million for a cyber instructional facility at Fort Gordon, nearly $31 million for a hangar at Moody Air Force base and more than $75 million for a combat vehicle warehouse and body repair shop at Albany's Marine Corps Logistics Base."
Perdue, a staunch Trump ally who has been described as within Trump's circle of trust, could face a stiff re-election challenge if Stacey Abrams enters the race. Abrams narrowly lost the 2018 race to be Georgia's governor, unable to overcome years of voter suppression efforts led by her Republican opponent, Brian Kemp.
In North Carolina, the flip-flopping Sen. Thom Tillis was initially opposed to Trump's fake emergency, but then went back on his word and voted exactly how Trump told him to. In doing so, he jeopardized more than half a billion dollars worth of funding for the military in his state. Tillis is willing to abandon water treatment plant improvements and a new health care facility for Camp Lejeune just so Trump can build a vanity wall along the border. He's also willing to deprive his state of funding for airfield security at Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station.
Tillis's vote "is a slap in the face to our active duty service members and our veteran community," Robert Howard, spokesperson for the North Carolina Democratic Party, said in a Monday statement. "Tillis chose his political career over our military, and North Carolina will not forget this easily," he added.
The Trump administration has not made a final decision on which military projects will be robbed. But in just four states, Trump might steal millions of dollars from military personnel just so he can build a wall along the border.
And the elected senators in those states are not only refusing to stop Trump from taking the money, they are actively supporting his efforts.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.