Mar 23, 2015

U.S. Navy wish list has 12 Super Hornets, eight F-35s

The U.S. Navy included 12 F/A-18 Super Hornet and eight F-35s on a list of "unfunded priorities" prepared for Congress.
The Navy's list was reviewed by senior Pentagon officials and the Joint Chiefs of Staff this week, and should be sent to U.S. lawmakers in coming days.
Top Pentagon officials are skeptical about the weapons wish lists, and worry they help lawmakers "cherry pick" specific weapons programs to fund, while crowding out bigger priorities.
A decision by Congress to fund the extra Boeing jets as part of the Navy's fiscal 2016 budget would help the company extend its St. Louis production line beyond the end of 2017.Company officials have said they must decide this summer whether to start shutting down the line or bet their own money to buy titanium and other supplies that take a long time to deliver, before Congress finalize the 2016 budget.
Ordering Super Hornets now would also preserve the option of ordering additional EA-18G electronic attack aircraft, or Growlers.
Boeing has said it needs to build two jets a month at the facility to maintain current pricing.
The company is also chasing a possible order from Kuwait that could keep the factory running through the end of 2018.

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