Roll Call! Senate Adopts Resolution Condemning F-35 Jets in VT (22-7), 2019


in the State Senate on April 24, 2019 by a vote of
Purpose: to draw attention to the potential storage of nuclear weapons on the new F-35 jets in Burlington, in hopes that the federal government will change its mind and move the F-35 jets elsewhere.
Analysis:  Those voting YES hope to signal Vermonters’ distaste for potentially locating nuclear weapons in Vermont. They believe that storing nuclear weapons could mean that Vermonters will become collateral damage if enemies of the United States choose to attack our nuclear capabilities.
Those voting NO believe there is no chance that Burlington will ever house nuclear weapons. Burlington lacks the military security and isolation that dozens of other more suitable sites in the US exhibit. Since the decision has already been made, this resolution would just send a message that Vermonters don’t trust the Guard. This is deeply concerning given that about Guard employs 3600 members and plans to spend $100 million in the Vermont economy from 2019-2023 to maintain the new F-35 aircraft.
Senate Journal, Wednesday, May 22, 2019. “And that when so amended the resolution ought to be adopted. Thereupon, the resolution was read the second time by title only pursuant to Rule 43, the recommendation of amendment was agreed to on a roll call Yeas 22, Nays 7.” (Read the Journal, p. 1579-1580)

How They Voted

Timothy Ashe (D/P-Chittenden) – YES
Becca Balint (D-Windham) – YES
Philip Baruth (D-Chittenden) – YES
Joseph Benning (R-Caledonia) – NO
Christopher Bray (D-Addison) – YES
Randy Brock (R-Franklin) – NO
Brian Campion (D-Bennington) – YES
Alison Clarkson (D-Windsor) – YES
Brian Collamore (R-Rutland) – NO
Ann Cummings (D-Washington) – YES
Ruth Hardy (D-Addison) – YES
Cheryl Hooker (D-Rutland) – YES
Debbie Ingram (D-Chittendent) – YES  
M. Jane Kitchel (D-Caledonia) – YES
Virginia Lyons (D-Chittenden) – YES
Mark MacDonald (D-Orange) – YES
Richard Mazza (D-Chittenden-Grand Isle) – NO
Richard McCormack (D-Windsor) – YES
James McNeil (R-Rutland) – YES
Alice Nitka (D-Windsor District) – YES
Corey Parent (R-Franklin) – NO
Chris Pearson (P-Chittenden) – ABSENT
Andrew Perchlik (D-Washington) – YES
Anthony Pollina (P/D/W-Washington) – YES
John Rodgers (D-Essex-Orleans) – NO
Richard Sears (D-Bennington) – YES
Michael Sirotkin (D-Chittenden) – YES
Robert Starr (D-Essex-Orleans) – NO
Richard Westman (R-Lamoille) – YES
Jeanette White (D-Windham) – YES

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Roger Joslin May 24, 2019 at 8:02 pm

These people are so ignorant.


Robert May 25, 2019 at 12:07 am

No I do not agree with the Senate. My preference would be to eject the Senate majority from Vermont and simultaneously welcome the F-35.


Stephen Murphy May 25, 2019 at 7:20 pm

Noted that all Chittenden county senators voted yes. So I will be voting against ALL senate incumbents next election. Ignoramuses.


Ray Thomas May 27, 2019 at 6:06 pm

These poor ignorant saps should take a course in Economics 101. Even Leahy voted for the F-35. The State is not sustainable in its current form and is getting worse! People with the ability to move (money) are leaving and the State under its current leadership will implode 😟


Sen. Joe Benning May 31, 2019 at 3:56 pm

I’d like to clarify my “NO” vote. I didn’t vote “NO” because I didn’t think there was ever a chance that Burlington would house nuclear weapons. (In fact, nuclear weapons WERE stored here.) I voted “NO” because I believe it is imperative that our armed forces have (at the very least) weapons capable of dealing with the weapons that our enemies carry. A classic example of that was Senator Clarkson’s statement on the floor (she was a “YES” vote) that our Guard intercepted a nuclear-capable Russian bomber. As I also said on the Senate floor, this resolution leaves the impression that we don’t trust our own military to be responsible with the weapons we give them, a sad commentary in a needless resolution.

And the idea that Vermont would become collateral damage in an attack on our nuclear capabilities is absurd. Any Russian/Chinese strategist knows that Vermont’s planes would be launched and gone long before any missiles could reach us. Their weapons systems are no doubt trained on infrastructure like the oil refineries in New Jersey, which if hit would take most of New York along with it. Or the Norfolk Navy yard, with sizable portions of our naval fleet docked there at any one time, consisting of ships that don’t travel fast enough to get out of the way before enemy missiles could reach it. Study your history: think about why the Japanese strategically decided to attack Pearl Harbor.


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