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House Members Send Warning to White House Over AUKUS, Attack Submarine Procurement

January 19, 2024

Mallory Shelbourne and Sam Lagrone


USS Hyman G. Rickover (SSN-795) completing Electric Boat acceptance trials on Oct. 3, 2023. US Navy Photo

By Mallory Shelborune and Sam Lagrone

Lawmakers are warning the Biden administration not to disrupt the procurement plans for the Virginia-class attack boat program, arguing doing so will hobble the AUKUS partnership.

In a letter, key Republican and Democrat lawmakers on the House Armed Services Committee urged President Joe Biden to continue buying two Virginia-class submarines per year to maintain a healthy industrial base and build enough submarine capacity that the U.S. can sell boats to the Australians. The bipartisan message comes as the White House and Pentagon consider requesting only one Virginia-class submarine in the Fiscal Year 2025 defense budget, several industry and defense officials. Last year’s budget request projected the Navy buying two boars per year for the foreseeable future.

“Simply put, now is not the time to insert instability in the supply chain with uncertainty in procurement rates,” lawmakers wrote in the letter, dated Jan. 17.

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