Montana Senator on McConnell Lapse and Defense Authorization Act
Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - Montana Senator Steve Daines met online with Montana reporters on Thursday to provide an update on the National Defense Authorization Act, however, the first question asked pertained to an incident that occurred on Wednesday with 81-year-old Senator Mitch McConnell who had what appeared to be an episode where he lost focus for nearly 30 seconds while meeting with reporters.
Daines, who was at the podium with McConnell at the time, acknowledged the incident but said McConnell recovered quickly.
Daines Commented on Mitch McConnell's Lapse at the Microphone
“I'm not sure if this was shown on the media when they had that clip of when the incident occurred,” began Senator Daines. “But what was not also shown is that he returned back to the press conference, I think even before I finished up my remarks, and stood in front of the press corps, and he handled the questions as he always does, and probably took five or six questions. I didn't see any change in the way he answered questions and believe me, the leader doesn't get easy questions.”
The reporter asked Daines if he still has confidence in McConnell to continue as the minority leader in the U.S. Senate.
“I think the conference remains in good hands with his leadership,” he said. “He's 81 years old, and I think there was probably a dehydration issue. That is my sense. He got right back on as if he never was off his feet but came right back and answered questions literally minutes after he had that moment there of silence that lasted about 20 seconds.”
Daines said Malmstrom Drag Shows put the Air Force in a Negative Light
Regarding the funding of the military, Daines brought up once again the drag shows promoted on the Malmstrom Air Force base in Great Falls.
“We've heard this feedback from all over our state from those in active service and those who are our veterans, saying that something like that has no business being on a publicly promoted and sanctioned social media website of a missile wing that has the most powerful weapons known to mankind are intercontinental ballistic missiles,” he said.
Daines said such activity and the publicity that followed is detrimental to the military mission of the U.S. Air Force in the eyes of our adversaries.
Daines said America's Enemies have Lost Respect for our Military
“I think these kinds of moments distract from the mission,” he said. “It hurts morale, and also our adversaries look at this and just kind of wonder what's going on, especially when you think about Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea. So we're going to continue to battle for the things we think are right to have in that bill. We will keep battling to the very end. But at the end of this process, there will have to be a reconciliation time between the Senate bill and the House bill, and we'll take a look at what the final bill is, but at the moment, we're in the process of getting the Senate bill passed and over for consideration with the House.”
Asked about legislation prohibiting hostile foreign powers from buying up land near military installations, Daines said the legislation is necessary for national defense to prevent spying and possible espionage activities.