(USA Features) Texas GOP Rep. Pat Fallon pushed back on assertions that the U.S. military is rife with “white supremacy” and is thus hurting readiness, calling it a “fabricated issue” at a time when the military ought to be laser-focused on real threats from abroad.
“We’re talking a couple of dozen people [expelled from the military for extremist behavior] that does not affect the readiness of the United States,” Fallon told Newsmax’s “Stinchfield” on Tuesday. “This is a fabricated issue.”
He went on to say that he inquired of the military how many personnel had been discharged due to “extremist behavior,” adding that four out of the 220,000 Marines and nine out of the Army had been dismissed.
He said the Navy and the Air Force did not respond to his inquiry.
“What is so troubling is that we asked each branch, the Marines were forthright and forthcoming with us, and the Army had given the number to ranking member Rep. [Mike] Rogers, R-Ala., but the Navy and the Air Force never got back to us,” Fallon told Stinchfield.
“We have been waiting now for a couple of months. We hope to get them because this is supposed to be about logic and fact, and not speculation and emotion, because this is a problem that does not exist from the numbers,” he continued.
The Texas Republican also noted that a one-day “stand down” ordered by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to address ‘extremism’ in the ranks cost between $600 million and $700 million.
“Budgets are so tight now, and the Democrats want a flat budget that doesn’t even meet inflation while China is increasing their military spending by 7% because they want to go with parity, and then eventually want superiority,” he said.
“What we found was to stand out for that one day in just expense, you know, lost productivity for the active-duty force alone is about probably $304 million,” he noted further.
“When you add in the additional 1.1 million of [National] Guard and reservists, and then the other 700,000 civilians, we could be talking about $600-$700 million, almost $1 billion dollars for a problem that doesn’t exist.”
Some recent surveys of military members found that about one-third have seen “white supremacy” or “racist ideology” within the ranks, but those results don’t appear to match the military’s dismissal rates, Fallon noted.