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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  October 22, 2015 9:00pm-11:01pm EDT

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>> on behalf of all of us, i want to thank you for your patience and your willingness to come and you have been willing to come in the past as i noted in my opening and we appreciate it, and with that, we will be adjourned. >> thank you.
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are [ no audio ]
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[ crowd chatter ]
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keep moving, keep moving. keep moving. >> secretary -- madam secretary, how do you feel? >> how do you feel the hearing went? >> still awake?
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>> if you want to pass through, you have to have a pass. if not go back to the area we had you before. right, i know that. >> charlie. all the republicans went in to a meeting. i can either get you cummings or congressman --
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and 11 hours, minus breaks that the house select committee on benghazi has been meeting. and hilary clinton walking out the door we will bring you any lawmaker reactions after this. if lawmakers decide to come to what are known as our stake-out positions. until then, we will take your phone calls, we want to hear what you think about what you heard about the day. hilary clinton at the house benghazi committee. we are going get to it with frank being our caller, buffalo,
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new york, democrat. >> caller: hi, my maname is fra, i voted for george w. bush, the first one, the senior. he got us out of iraq, before we took down the dictator ship. the second george w. bush, and dick cheney and rumsfeld i circling the maps and telling people, you know, there's mass destruction over here, they are going to bomb us, they are going the kill us. there was nothing. but nobody ever says anything about that. that's what i'm trying to say. it's, let's be fair. benghazi, yeah. it was for americans. and yes, i did serve in the military. but it was -- how many americans did we lose in iraq. we had to go in to pakistan and afghanistan, there's no doubt about that. but not iraq.
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we should have left that alone like george sr. did, because he knew it would create a vacuum. >> frank, where did you serve? >> caller: i served in the navy. >> all right, thank you. carry is on the line, mount view, hawaii. >> caller: i just got through watching the committees investigation. and i think i have to agree with the prior gentleman that both parties have been involved in shenanigans for years, that is why we have such a distrust of our government right now. i would like to bring up the point that i think somehow, we need to get control of our congress people, again. somehow, they have seemed to have left us behind, like we are not important to them anymore. i mean, i think it starts with the party leadership. telling everyone in the party how they should vote, or we are
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not going to give you campaign funds. that is going against rep representation of the people. it starts at the party level. and then you get in to lobbyists, going behind closed doors with these people. our democracy walks right out the other door. and then, we have an electoral college, that we don't even know who the people are, that are being nominated to elect our president. so, there's three walls right there between the people and legitimate representation. >> how does that work in to the benghazi hearing? >> caller: well, this is -- the whole thing has become such a circus, i feel, because she didn't provide the information that was asked for originally. i think that is where she is guilty. she should have come fourth with th -- forth with that information. >> sorry, hold on a minute. we will go to our stake-out
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committee and hear from the chair of the committee. >> she is an important witness, you cannot investigate benghazi without talking to the secretary of state at all relevant times. as i said this morning, she is one important witness out of that is now 50 important witnesses and there's a couple 50 to go. in terms of conclusions drawn, i don't draw conclusions until the end. from my standpoint, we keep going on until we are able to interview all the witnesses that we think have access to relevant information and importantly, accessed the documents. i did count how many times i heard he my colleagues to the left ask to produce documents. i counted zero. the six or seven of us, would be closer to writing the the final report if we could get a bit of help in gaining access to the document.
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so, with that. >> did you find any relevant piece of information? >> everyone will have their own perspective on that, i have a different interpretation of the phrase, personal review. then, the arb did. i think personal revow, means exactly what it says. personal review. we had a lot of q&a this morning about specific security incidents and specific requests. and her response was i have people and processes in place for that. and that's a fair answer, but you need to be prepared to sans why you have people and processes in place for security. but people and processes were not in place for milk,er fuel, fish, or the drival of sidney bloomenthal. [ inaudible question ] >> i think some of jimmy jordan's questioning. well, when you say new today, we
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knew some of that already. we knew about the e-mails, in terms of her testimony? i don't know that she testified that much differently today than she has previous times she testified. so, i would have go back and look at the transcript. >> chairman it begs the question, if that is the case, why spend nine hours on it if you don't think she produced anything you had not heard before? >> i have to go back and look at the other transcripts to see whether or not she said anything different or not. i will tell you this, you have to talk to the secretary of state and you have to talk to her after you gain access to her documents. so, really, i think the better question, with all due respect is how the previous committees were able to write their reports without access to what we had access to. that to me is a better question. >> reporter: who are you sbrug next? >> reporter: did you gain credibility today? >> how would i be able to answer that question? i don't know. i thought these were pretty
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credible folks before we started the day. i don't know, that is up to y'all to report that. i thought this was a constructive interaction. i was trying to be slow with the gavel so we would not cut her off. >> reporter: did you feel you got dragged in to a side show surrounding? >> i think rather than folks ask me why i'm talking about sidney bloomenthal, i think the better question is why was she listening to sidney bloomenthal, the reason he is coming up is he was the most prolific e-mailer to her. i did not say adviser, i said e-mailer. you will have to ask her, why this bunch of information we now know, he didn't even draft. it was drafted another guy. i mow this, when our ambassador, his papers were just accepted, and he made a specific request
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for more security, on that exactly that day, he is being asked to read and respond to an e-mail from sidney bloomenthal, you have to ask her that. i tried todayed and may ee eed y and maybe you are a better questioner. flip it around. we get a traunch of e-mails and the most prolific e-mailer to her on the subject matter is somebody that does not work for the state department, doesn't work for the united states government, was expressly reject frid ed from the president and the white house, how do you not talk to both of them why they are communicating. she is scrubbing the identifying information when she forwards it. what does that tell you? >> reporter: she did most of her business off e-mail?
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hearing from the chair of the benghazi select committee. and we are going to get back to your phone calls. we have kerry from hawaii, you still with us? k >> caller: yes i am. >> what are your feelings after hearing the chairman. >> caller: god bless him trying get to the bottom of it, i see how he is frustrated because of the lack of cooperation. the thing that adisgusts me is seeing the democrat people on the committee, and they did not have one legitimate question about the investigation. it was just all a bunch of, you know, feel good, back patting. oh, we want to, you know, we are sorry you had to come here and be abused. we have no legitimate questions, we don't really care about the truth. we care about you getting elected. and this, you know, both parties
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play this game. when it comes down to you are going put the country at risk to protect the political party. something has to change down there. they are going to push us up against the wall. and history dictates it's never pretty when revolutions happen. i would hate to he see something like this happening in the country. but the radical ends on the parties has become so radical. there's no middle ground in the country anymore. >> i want to take more phone calls, and take a few minutes worth. i will speak with a reporter who is going to join us on the floor. heidi with usa today, she joins us on the phone. and heidi, are you there? try to see if we can grab heidi.
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we are going try to get her back on the line. good in the meantime, take more of your phone calls. we have stephen, shelbyville, tennessee, republican. hi, stephen. >> caller: thank you for taking my call. the last caller hit on a few things that i was going to say. and one of the most important things to this nations is to be thankful we have people like tre who are recipients and they answer to their constituents about honesty and how government should answer to the people. and one of the most important things that i noticed about the whole thing watching it, when i was a able to watch it on television, hilary answers the question with a question. she doesn't want to answer anything that she feels is going
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make her look bad or incriminate her. or -- it's cat and mouse game. and it's a now you see it and now you don't. and the whole circus act with the democrats trying to bash anybody that has any kind of a question, as to what happened to those four innocent americans that were murdered. they were murdered because no one helped them. they were told to stand down. and she is, in my opinion, he she is protecting the president, and she is being a loyalist. and she is doing everything that she can to do what she prmgsed him that she'd do and that is to protect his hadministration and never quite be accountable for what she did. the american people are not dumb. you know, and there's democrats and madam presidents who vote republican, just like republicans do. and the reason they do that, is because people go across the line, and when this he do that,
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when they go across party lines and they see something that identifies a candidate, it's because they care about the country and the people's interest and the nation. i'm not seeing anything that hilary does that shows she cares about the country or the nation, or those people in benghazi that lost their lives. >> okay, thanks for the call, stephen, appreciate it. and heidi joins us, she is with usa today. looks like we have lost her again on the line. we will try to get her back. are you there, heidi? taking your phone calls, next up, margaret, tucson, arizona, independent. >> caller: hi, i watched this all day long, thank you, c-span, what i don't understand is i didn't hear one person on the panel ask, who gave the order for those troops that were ready
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to go in and help to stand down. i have never heard who gave the order in all the hearings i have heard, and yet, we have heard how they were ready to go and the officer in charge was shocked and said he, that he was a lifetime officer and said, he had never been asked to stand down in a case such as this. and i never heard anybody ask that. and i still wonder, who was it, that gave the order. was it our president. another thing. the campaign. and work with the democrats or the republicans or independents that is their campaign speech. when they get to washington, if they do that, i have seen a
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congressman booed in the congressional halls, because he did -- our own john mccain. did he have to cooperate with the other side. and try to negotiate certain bills. >> thanks for the call margaret. appreciate it. and i want to get to more calls as well. joining us on the line though is heidi, heidi are you there. yes, i'm here. hi, heidi, thank you for joining us, can you after what, ten hours, actually, eight hours, twenty minutes, 22 seconds by our count without the breaks. what did we learn today? >> well, let's remember what the
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goals of this hearing were. they were two the-fold, one, they were to uncover any you in information related to the attacks in benghazi. and it was a fishing expedition, the first point, the chairman said, he was not sure based on her testimony, that they had learned anything new. he needed transcripts from the previous testimony. what i cannot say is that there was a, you know, a heavy focus during the hearing. there's hundreds of security requests that apparent ly have been made. there was a lot of focus on the
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fact that they asked for the president to intervene in the first place in libya. there were no obvious conclusion c s coming out of this and by the chairman's own words, you mow, i think there was, as you heard from the callers, something in this, on the political question, for both sides. >> hm-mm. >> you know, i think republicans who didn't like her and didn't support her in the first place and were suspicious about benghazi will walk away saying it's further proof that there was a cover up of something here. and on the democratic side, i honestly think that in some ways this will be a boone to her, if you look at the reaction out in the twittersphere and in just in general from democrats, the fact that you know, this did go on so long. for ten hours, twice as long as
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the previous testimony that she lost her voice by the end of it. and with so many questions that they felt had been ask anded for a asked before and answered before, may play to her political advantage. i did speak to the gop pollster that was in the audience and that was his assessment as well. that any of the fireworks and dynamics and drama that were coming off of the stage there, would benefit her. just because the bar was so high for republicans coming to this, having -- there was kind of no smoking gun coming out of had this. no clear conclusion. >> now, heidi if you have to chose maybe a high point for both the committee and the secretary clinton, is there one th that stands out on both sides? >> on think on the gop side,
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representative jordan, you know, did have pointed questions to her about the videos, you know, of the, especially bass attack and what exactly transpired in the immediate math of the attacks. why there was a discrepancy of what happened and what the administration was saying, and what hilary clinton herself was saying. he had pointed questioning, i think that was one of the high points for him. for her, i think it was, more her had opportunity to share the personal storyies behind her involvement in this. the details of what went on in the embassy, with the effort to try to rescusitate ambassador
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stephens. from her perspective, the ability to put a more human face on the entire episode. >> so those are the high points, i'm coming back to you for the low points. where do you feel things fell apart for the committee or hilary during the ten hours today? >> i think it started three hours in when representative cummings got very kind of loud and confrontational with representative doudy. again, on the question of whether they were there for political reasons and i know that going in to this, that he did not want, that is exactly the kind of kind of made television moment he did not
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want. he kept himself in check after that. but he did respond in kind. it got kind of heated at that moment. and i know that was exactly the kind of thing that he wanted to avoid. on substance, i think, you know, one of the low points for the republicans was later after nine hours of questioning when the substance clearly veered in to things that were very off topic, in terms of her use of a private e-mail server at work. it was unrelated to libya. it was broad question of the f private e-mail server. that is something that he wanted on avoid, he said in national television interviews that he did not care about her e-mails that did not relate to libya. >> and oh, sorry, go ahead, heidi. finish up. yeah. >> i have a hard time coming up with a real low point for clinton, other than i think at one point, she plugged her book.
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which i don't think was necessarily, you know, the wisest move. but then again, you know, eight hours, seven, eight hours of questioning there. >> give us a sense since you are in the room and our cameras can only pick up so much, what was it like in there, what was the mood, i know it was a long day? >> hm-mm, you know, clinton, really kind of, i was struck by the fact that she remained so even, you look become to the questioning from 2013, when ron johnson was questioning her, she did raise her voice in response. and there was a lot aimed at her, but in terms of the other atmosphereics, i think people were starting to show the fact that they were tired. i think it was unusual. i is have covered a lot of
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congressional hearings, it was unusual that she had a row of democratic surrogates, democratic house members. i talked to them, and said, are you all asked to come here and they said, no, we've never seen anything like this before and we came on our own. i saw an interesting mix of people in the room. tom davis, former virginia republican. who was there, kind of wearing his old congressional pin and i said, you know, why the ddid yoe here? and i said, it's a spectacle. you know, this is -- this is -- i have never seen anything like this. so, i think that there was a lot of interest from all quarters. you know, in the room, represented there. >> and just to wrap up, what is next? what happens with the committee as far as you know? doudy will will continue to interview witnesses.
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you heard him at the end say that. you know, this is not the end. that they will continue to interview witnesses and i don't think that we will see a final conclusion out of this until well in to the new year, frankly, i think that my guess is that republicans outside of congress and both in congress probably as well, from a political perspective will probably pivot to focusing on other aspects of hilary clinton, including her foundation and maybe other aspects of her service, that on state department, i think that you know, we will see both members on the committee and off, continue to make the argument that you know, this hearing raised questions, but they don't have all of the information, and that will be what they say in the end. we were not able to actually prove that we got all of her e-mails and so, we will never know what we don't know. from clinton's perspective, she
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said that i did not conduct most of my business at the state department. the issue will be muddied and they will both have fodder to use to appeal to their bases. >> heidi, thank you for the insight in sharing what you heard and saw today. >> going take your calls again, back to the phones. delorain he is, waiting on the line for us. democrat, deloraes is, are you there? one more chance here. and we have got bill. bill, texas, republican. and bill, sounds like you have your phone up loud in the background. you are on with us, can you hear me? >> caller: hello, i'm hear listening. >> hi, bill, go ahead. >> caller: hi, this is bill. >> yep,ing. -- yep, go ahead.
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bill, i think you are confused if you have your tv turned up too loud in the background. going to come back to you, okay? and let's see if we can get don on the line. >> caller: yes, my question is, is normally in a courtroom, you have a prosecutor would present a burden of proof and then you have the defense, the gop being the prosecutor here, and the especially dids -- and the democrats being the defense. it a question for you maybe. how are we going to ining to c conclusion? it a lot of he said he, she said, there's no evidence, how do you get to the bottom and how do you come to an answer, who is right or wrong? and what is the fall-out from it? i mean, there has to be somebody that is right or wrong, your reporter heidi had just said is,
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just going to be a lot of muddy water and it's going to go on until the election, and the campaign and then it gets pushed back. what maybe you have an idea how do you -- how do you come to a conclusion in all this? >> well, you know, i think, don, that you know, it's a matter of ten hours of testimony, and finding out what people around the united states think after ten hours, where are you at? >> caller: well, that is just it. everybody gets lost. >> yeah. >> caller: it a lot of opinions and there's no facts. you know, in a courtroom, a judge would probably disallowed a lot of the so-called testimony. i'm just in a loss, i am probably like most americans, kind of frustrated with the proceedings. i mean, we want a conclusion. one way or the other. >> right. >> caller: and i just don't -- i just don't think there is.
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i think it's just going to go by the wayside. and nobody is going to know the truth and each side will have an opinion, that's just the way it's going to go. >> and we are going to be hearing from hilary clinton this weekend, saturday, she is going to be at one of the dinners that is on the campaign trail. so, whether she is taking up this issue, or continues to with her had campaigning, you can tune in live, 9:00 p.m. eastern time on saturday. we will have is it on c-span. and also, taking your phone calls, more phone calls and more discussion of what we heard today as well, tomorrow morning on washington journal. stonington, connecticut, courtney, democrat, hi, courtney. courtney, we will try to punch it up here again. courtney, are you there? there you go. >> caller: i turned on the tv to watch the house benghazi committee. instead, i saw the house hilary
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clinton e-mail committee. i thought the republicans were just awful. they were like pitbulls and i have a lot of lawyers in my family. and i thought that hilary just presented herself and answered so well. i'm -- i feel so good about it, i'm going to make a monetary contribution tomorrow. >> all right. >> caller: for her. >> thanks, courtney for the call. altuna, pennsylvania, democrats line, hi, mckenzie. >> caller: thank you for having me. >> you bet. >> caller: a couple of things that i wanted to mention. first, i know it's awful we lost four americans in the tragedy. and i know we have had a benghazi committee before. hopefully this can up-turn something we don't know about, the committee can get information. the one thing that i noticed, the republicans were very
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aggressive towards hilary and the democrats were kind of laid back and just sympathized for her. i think there needs to be a healthy balance to figure out the information to get the info on this benghazi issue. but also, i do like hilary clinton, i feel like she was a bit repetetive, she kept mentioning that the 90 to 95% of the e-mails were given. and she was not giving a clearance that was needed. so, i think, i'm hoping that with more testimony on this committee, that we can find out more information, but i need it to be a healthy balance of questioning to get the answers we need. >> thank you for the call. republican line, ed, huntington bea beach. >> caller: how are you? >> i'm fine. how are you? >> caller: i'm fine, just finished watching the hilary video here, it appears to be like she should get an emmy for
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her dramatic display. and i have never seen anybody take so long to answer a yes and no question. i know it's to stall for time, but seems like a ballerina on steroids. and she never passes up a chance to pat herself on the back. and personally i think they should put her in space. >> republicans like, rodger, carolina, rhode island. >> caller: hi, how are you doing? >> good, thank. >> caller: i have watched the hearing all day. and there are, yeah, the thing that strikes me in all of this, you know, something that the last couple of callers had mentioned, you know, as far as hilary's performance. you know, it's interesting that sid bloom enthal, that was such
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an advise and supporter for the clintons through to this point in time. he came up with the -- he was the one that coined the term, permanent campaign. what i have witnessed in her and in answering, or not answering the questions, and just continually rehearsing the talking points. that is what people in campaigns do. they never answer the questions directed, they keep talking, rehearsing their talking points. then, the thing that struck me with the regard to the e-mails. the significance of it. as i watch it and in identifying and focusing on sid bloomenthal, i was sprourprised that they ne approached the subject that he is a paid employee or was up until recently, of the clinton foundation, all the while that i was advising here, to the tune of $10,000 a month.
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if there was any consideration. i mean, that anybody on either side would legitimately ask, would be with respect to conflict of interest. here's a person that had a te y steady stream of information, querrey going back and forth. and it was obvious when the senatorer read the particular references to the e-mails asking for more information. ask cing for opinion. asking for different, and even forwarding his opinions to other people in the process in setting up negotiations with a country where in he was a lobbyist for businesses. and at the same time, being on payroll of the clinton foundation, how that never came in to conversation, i have no idea. but i mean, if you want to talk about a smoking gun, the issue in all of this is to find something, where if there's
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corruption, then it needs to be expos exposed. >> appreciate the point and all the phone calls. if you did not have a chance to weigh in, we will have on tomorrow morning on washington journal, we will dedicate the entire program to your reaction, your phone calls to hilary clinton's testimony before the benghazi committee, 8:22:22 by our count. you can c join us at 7:00 a.m. eastern tomorrow morning. >> you are watching c-span3, next, a house armed services committee on the f-35 joint strike fighter program. followed by a senator armed services hearing on the defense policy outlook. and then a panel on the syrian refuge crisis and after that, it's question time at the british house of commons. every weekend, the c-span networks feature programs.
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we are with live from council bluff's iowa for a town hall meeting with senator ted cruz followed by a live call-in program. and on saturday night, it's the jefferson/jackson dinner. speakers will be bernie sanders, martineau maly and hilary clinton and former governor of rhode island, and sunday evening, republican presidential candidate will hold a town hall in carolina. and book tv, the wisconsin book festival from madison, featuring interviews with nonfiction authors. including mary norris and her book to english language. and david maraniss on the city of detroit. and sunday night at 9:00 on afterwards. former missouri -- on american
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history tv on c-span3. saturday evening at 6:00, clayton laurie, and sunday morning at 10:00 on oral histories. julian bond who passed away in august. on a interview growing up in the south and get our complete weekend schedule at the f-35 joint strike fighter program was the subject of the subcommittee hearing yesterday. the director, and integration office director, major general, outlined the program's risks. however, general boggdon assured the subcommittee that the
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program is on track. >> we will receive testimony on the current status of the f-35 joint strike fighter program. i'd like to welcome our witnesses, lieutenant general christopher bagdanf-35 program executive officer. and major general jeffrey l.harigian, director of the air force f-35 integration office. thank you both for your service and we look forward to your testimony today. this hearing continues the committee's ongoing oversight of the f-35 program since the program officially began in 2001. we all know that the f-35 is a complex program that has experienced issues with cost, schedule, and performance throughout its development. the subcommittee has held numerous hearings and briefings
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to better understand the critical need for the fifth generation strike fighter capability and to understand the issues facing the program. most recently the subcommittee visited eggland air force base where we were able to meet with both pilots and maintenance personnel for the joint strike fighter. it's through this ongoing committee oversight that we've identified issues related to the program and in turn have worked with the department to help development corrective actions to ensure the program remains on track. for example, in the fiscal year 2014 the subcommittee learned of software development problems and recommended legislation that would establish a team to review the f-35 software development program and make recommendations to fix these problems. for fiscal year 2015 the committee recommended legislation that would continue the gao's assessments and analysis of the development, testing and production of the f-35 program.
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during our visit, the subcommittee learned of issues with the f-35 maintenance system known as the logistics information system or alis. as a result the subcommittee included a provision in its mark of the national defense authorization act for fiscal year 2016 that would require the gao to review the alis program and provide a report to the congressional defense committees by april 1, 2016. the committee also recommended a provision that would require a review of the f-35's engine program by a federally funded research and development center to ensure that future engines will not be subject to the failure that caused an f-35 engine fire on takeoff just last june. each of the subcommittee's legislative recommendations over the past three years have been adopted in the annual national defense authorization acts. in the past month the subcommittee learned the ejection seat does not meet the specifications for lighter weight pilots. the specification is that it
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needs to be able to accommodate a safe escape at pilot weights of 103 to 245 pounds. we understand that until this deficiency is corrected pilots weighing less than 136 pounds will not fly the f-35 due to a high risk of serious injury that could result from having to eject. we look forward to our witnesses addressing this issue today and the plans to get this problem corrected. in closing, while strong oversight of the f-35 remains necessary, the value of the fifth generation stealth aircraft is absolutely assured, like the f-35 in future conflicts is absolutely critical to successfully address these emerging threats and maintain air dominance in any overseas contingency operation. i look forward to all of our witnesses today and expect to hear from them what follow-up actions the program is undertaking to address the issues identified as a result of our delegations visit. before we begin, i would also like to thank all of our colleagues, miss loretta sanchez
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but as ranking member when she returns if she would like at that point to offer her opening statement, we will get to her opening statement. with that, we will begin with you, general. >> thank you, sir. chairman turner and distinguished members of the committee, thank you for this opportunity to address you regarding the f-35 lightning 2 program. i'm pleased to be joined the air force's f-35 integration office lead. the f-35 lightning 2 is of vital importance to our national security and as the program executive officer and program director, i'm committed to delivering an affordable, reliable, and sustainable fifth generation fighter to our war fighters. the f-35 will form the backbone of u.s. air combat superiority for decades to come. it will replace legacy tactical fighter fleets of the air force, navy, marine corps with a dominant, multirole fifth generation aircraft capable of
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projecting u.s. power and deterring potential adversaries. for our international customers who are participating in the program the f-35 will become a linchpin for future coalition operations and will help to close a crucial capability gap that will enhance the strength of our security alliances. the f-35 program today is executing well across the entire spectrum of acquisition to include development and design, flight test, production, fielding and base stand-up, sustainment of our fielded aircraft and building a global sustainment interprice. the program is at a pivot point where we are moving from slow and steady progress to a rapidly growing and accelerating program. however, the program is not without risks and challenges as these come with any program of this size and complexity. i'm confident that the current risks will be resolved and we will be able to overcome any future problems and deliver the
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full f-35 combat capability including the u.s. air force and navy initial operating capability declarations in the future. since the last time i appeared before this committee, the program has successfully completed a number of important events, not the least of which was helping the u.s. marine corps declare initial operating capability this summer. a few of this year's accomplishments include -- the beginning of our block 3-f the final version of software inflight test. two successful ship trials one for the u.s. marine corps above the "uss wasp" and one for the u.s. navy on the "uss eisenhower." we delivered the first ioc aircraft to the air force at hill air force base last month and delivery of the uk and dutch aircraft at edwards air force base for participation in operational test this summer. the rollout of the first flight and flight of the italian f-35a
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from our faco, which is our fabrication and checkout facility in italy last month. we also rolled out our first norwegian aircraft. we've also completed the we still have technical deficiencies to correct. including the ejection seat
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which we'll talk about today, the logistics information system or alis, which i plan on talking about today. and various fuel system and structural shortfalls, but we have corrections in place for all of these issues and we'll be able to implement the solutions in the near future. with respect to aircraft production, the production line is becoming more efficient each and every day and the price of you'll three variants continues to drop lot after lot. i expect this trend to continue well into the 2020s and still price target of an f-35 -- f-35a model with an engine, with fee, in fy '19 dollars. we're monitoring the supply base as we begin to prepare for a ramp-up in production from 59 airplanes in lot eight to 104 airplanes in lot 9 to 123 airplanes in lot 10 up to a final production rate of nearly 170 airplanes per year in the early 2020s. we're also seeing some improvements in the reliability
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and maintainability of the aircraft as a result of focused efforts on the supply chain, the repair cycle time of spare parts, spare part availabilities and improved maintenance procedures. we're also on track with our organic depot stand-ups both in the united states and in the pacific and european regions. we've begun the requirements validation and the initial acquisition planning for a follow-on modernization program that will begin at the end of our current development program in october of 2017. i am committed to establishing a lean, effective, modernization program with the appropriate government control and oversight to ensure that it remains both affordable and transparent while at the same time effectively enhancing the f-35's capability for decades to come. with respect to risks and challenges, i see the completion of mission system software development, alis development,
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and the previously mentioned fuel system and ejection seat deficiencies as our most prominent, current technical risks. our ability to stand up four separate reprogramming labs that create mission data files in time for all of our customers and our ability to complete all the weapons envelope testing for a block 3-f as well as our ability to start o.t. on time are the major schedule risks to the program today. i'll close by saying that i believe the program is in a better position today than it was one, two, or three years ago. it's a growing and accelerating program that is making solid progress. the weapons system design is sound. the program is fundamentally on track. we remain confident that we'll be able to deliver the full f-35 capability within time and the money we have been given. as with any big, complex program, new discoveries, challenges and obstacles will occur.
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however, we believe the combined government/industry team has the ability to overcome our current deficiencies and deal with future issues should they arise in order to successfully deliver on our commitments. the joint program office will continue executing with integrity, discipline, transparency, and accountability. holding ourselves accountable for the outcomes on this program. we recognize the responsibility the program has been given to provide the backbone of future u.s. and allied fighter capability for generations to come. we also recognize that our sons and daughters and our grandsons and granddaughters may someday take this weapons system into harm's way to defend our freedom and way of life. it is a responsibility that we never forget in the program office. thank you, again, for this opportunity, and i look forward to answering all your questions. >> thanks, general. >> thank you, sir. chairman turner, distinguished members of the tactical air and
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land forces subcommittee, thank you for the opportunity to provide an update on the united states air force's progress toward delivering initial operating capability, ioc, for the f-35a. the combination of f-35 lethality, survivability and adaptability make it our platform of choice for operations in highly contested threat environment. the aircraft's state-of-the-art sensor fusion, network interoperability and broad array of advanced air-to-air and air-to-surface munitions enable unmatched lethality well into the 21st century. the f-35's exceptional survivability is achieved with a combination of observable technologies and advanced electronic attack and electronic protection, and shared situational awareness. it will form the backbone of future joint and combined air operations enabling future joint force commander success.
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today, sir, we have 79 f-35as delivered and they have flown over 21,000 hours in our air force. the program is on the road to ioc for the air force. specifically within the last two months we received our first three aircraft at hill air force base and are flying them now at a high rate. this month air force operational testers are flying with our ioc software load and building f-35 tactics, techniques and procedures. we have work to be done, though, specifically we're concerned about the software capability we will get in our ioc load, alis software delivery, and the modification schedule for our jets at hill. all that notwithstanding, we expect to declare ioc as planned in 2016. however, this is still a program in development and challenges remain. we will continue to work closely with the joint program office, lockheed martin, to assure we achieve full war fighting capability. while ioc's an important
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milestone for the program, we must not lose sight of the goal of full war fighting capability. the program must develop and deliver 3-f software on time and we need to invest now in block four follow-on modernization to provide the war fighter with the most current and relevant capabilities required to meet the future threat. the capability advantage that the air force had enjoyed over potential adversaries is closing fast. in modern warfare, if the air force fails the joint air force fails. thank you again for this opportunity to discuss the f-35. i look forward to answering your questions. >> we have a number of members with degrequestions. the ejection seat. obviously this is not performing. this is supposed to be life-saving, not life-threatening. can you share more information
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about this? what is the problem, how is it being fixed, what does it take to implement the correction? >> yes, congressman. if you'll indulge me, it's a complex problem so i'll spend a little bit of time trying to clear up some of the misinformation that you might have. first and foremost, safety is always paramount in the program for me and my team. i would never, ever ask a pilot to do anything that i wouldn't do myself. and it airworthiness authorities that work with me on the navy side and the air force side feel and act the same way. so we take this deficiency with the ejurisdiction seat and the safe escape very, very seriously. and let me explain what the problem and is what we're doing about it. so as we began, as you said, congressman, the ejection seat we have in this airplane was designed to cover the widest
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range of pilot weights and sizes that we've ever had in a fyiighr airplane. the seat and ejection system das signed to deal with pilots down to 103 pounds all the way up to 245 pounds, as you said. it's also designed from the small pilots to the largest pilots. a combination of the weight and the size means that we will be able to put more pilots in this airplane than any other legacy airplane before it. we do have deficiencies. we have found those deficiencies through the normal testing process wide receiver we have a number of deficiencies with the ejection seat, not all of which were found just recently. we have been testing the ejection seat for many, many years. and when you start testing a system like the ejection seat what you do is you start from
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what we call the center of the envelope of that ejection seat, meaning the average weight, the average speed, the average altitude. then you work your way outside to the edges of the envelope. when you get to the edges of the envelope in terms of speed and the weight of the pilots, things become more severe. and are harder to achieve in terms of safety. the test that occurred on 27 august of this year that resulted in the air force and the navy restricting pilots below 136 pounds if you drew that envelope would be on the very, very corner of it. it's a difficult place to be able to design the ejection seat for.
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having said that after that test we recognized there was a deficiency. that is a different deficiency than a few of the other deficiencies i'm going to talk about which encompass all the problems we're having with the ejection seat. so let me start and talk about a few of the other issues that we've had on the seat that we are in the process of fixing. then the last problem that resulted pilots less than 136 pounds. all the other problems i'm going to talk about came with no restrictions. we continued to fly with all sizes and all weights of pilots. so in the ejection sequence, there are three important portions of that process. first is catapult, when the seat gets blasted out of the airplane. for a lightweight pilot today, less than 136 pounds, when he or she goes up the rails of the airplane in that catapult, his or her neck gets pushed down
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like that. when we initially did the testing on that condition, what we found was if the pilot has the helmet on his head or her head and that helmet weighs most of than 4.8 pounds, then the neck loads for that lightweight pilot, by a very little bit, exceed what we would consider to be per detectively safe. perfectly safe. what the first thing we did was we began taking weight out of the helmet to ensure that every helmet we have is going to be weighing less than 4.8 pounds. today our helmets weigh about 5.1 pounds. the we're developing that new helmet that weighs less than 4.8 pounds today. we never had to restrict lightweight pilots for that catapult phase because the neck loads that they would experience with that, even with that heavier helmet, were so close to
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the safety limits that the air worthiness authorities thought that risk was quite acceptable. and i agreed with that. now, i did the risk assessment with my team and i give to it the airworthiness authorities and they decide. so that was problem number one which we are fixing with a lighter-weight helmet today that resulted in no restrictions on who could fly the airplane. the second problem is once the ejection seat leaves the airplane, you get wind blast. because the ejection seat is moving at hundreds miles an hour, almost as if you put your hand out of your car as you're driving and you feel that wind blast. in this instance here the pilot's head gets forced backward instead of forward. once again in our testing what we found out was, if a lightweight pilot less than 136 pounds has a helmet that weighs more than 4.8 pounds, then that neck stress going backwards is higher than what we'd like it to be. but not so high as that we would
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need to have restricted pilots from flying the airplane. so the solution to both those problems, the catapult problem and the wind blast problem, are to reduce the weight of the helmet. we have been ongoing with the development of the new helmet and the new weight for about six months. it will take about another year for us to finish that to ensure that every helmet is less than 4.8 pounds. we did have one pilot at this period of time that was flying the airplane that was less than 136 pounds. and the reason why that pilot could continue to fly even with those known risks was because we hand-built him a helmet that weighed 4.7 pounds. we cannot manufacture on the production line in any mass quantity a helmet that weighs less than 4.8 pounds. that's why we're redesigning it. for that particular pilot we fabricated a helmet that weighed less than 4.8 pounds. that was why that pilot, even
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during this known risk area, was able to continue to fly. those are two problems being solved with one solution that we should have done in about a year. the third problem we found during normal testing occurs in what we call the opening shock phase of the ejection. when the parachute on the back of the seat comes out. in this instance here, when that parachute comes out, once again, the pilot's head moves forward. in this instance the only pilots being affected by the opening shock being too strong and causing the neck loads to be above what we would consider safe is once again that lightweight pilot. the risk of that happening though was low enough the airworthiness authorities felt it was not significant enough to have to restrict anybody from flying the airplane when we found that problem. but when we did find that problem and we found that one
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probably about eight or nine months ago in normal testing, we already began a solution. the solution to that problem for the lightweight pilot is just to delay that parachute coming out by a fraction of a second. because as the seat comes out and hits the wind blast, it begins to decelerate. if you wait just a fraction of a second before you put that main chute out, the seat has decelerated enough so that the force when the parachute comes out isn't as severe. to get to that solution, we are putting a little switch, a switch on the side of the ejection seat that when the pilot climbs up into the cockpit, can set that at heavyweight or lightweight. this were a number of ways we could have solved that problem. we could have put an automatic sensing system into the seat, much like when you sit in your car on the passenger side and the seat knows you're there and the air baguettes energized.
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we could have put a switch on the seat that would have had the maintainers put it in the heavy or lightweight position. we went to the war fighters and we said what solution do you want? we can solve this problem in a number of ways. and they said, we want the pilot to be responsible for moving that switch, we want he or she to be responsible for ensuring that it's in the right position for their safety. thus we're building that switch on the side of the seat as the pilot climbs up, they can go light or heavy. >> okay, general, as i said, we have a number of people who want to ask questions. i'm going to cut you off at that point. thank you for the in-depth description of that issue and problem. obviously there are two aspects of it. one, finding a solution. two, its implementation of a solution. we're looking forward to both your confirmation of the -- all the problems identified, and two, the implementation of those solutions so our committee can be satisfied that those really will address the issues. >> yes, sir.
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>> now, general horrigan, the -- everybody in the committee recognizes the need for the f-35 capability. everybody recognizes that not having the f-35 capability goes to an issue of our having air dominance. it's we win versus we lose. everybody recognizes that one of the difficulties and problems with this program has been the concurrency, that we're both inventing at the same time we're producing, and that as a result of that, we will have delays, cost overruns, and at times there will be problems that will have to be identified that then need to be fixed as general bogdan was testifying. the biggest them we have is an assurance when we get to the end that this f-35 capability we all know we need is the actually the capacity we demanded, that that
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plane performs as it's supposed to. january 25th, flight tests demonstrated the f they'35 was s maneuverable as an f 16. can you comment on the conclusions of that test and the implications of f-35 in combat? >> yes, chairman. as a reminder that was one of the very first developmental test sorties flown to better understand the slow flight characteristics of the airplane. since that initial sortie we have now been able to put the airplane in the hands of our operational testers so these are the folks that are now ringing out the tactics, techniques and procedures for how we will fly the airplane in combat. in fact, sir, over the course of the last month, they have been developing some specific exercises to better understand the characteristics of the airplane. that would include post-stall
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acceleration, how the airplane turns, to prepare them to do what we would call basic fighter maneuvers which is where they fight one against one. d to see how the airplane performs in both an offensive and defensive perspective. the results of that, i can share with you i just talked with them last friday, they've been very pleasantly surprised on how the airplane's performing. it's been very positive. and what they're finding is that as they arrive in the post stall regime, the airplane is extremely stable. so stable, in fact, that as they began the testing, they initial hi had 150 knot minimum air speed requirement. they have since removed that and that's how we're going to go out and train, with no minimum air speed requirement. which is really a testament to how well the airplane's performing. in that environment, we will continue to learn. what i would offer to you is that we are still in the nascent phases of fully understanding how the airplane will employ in
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that environment. but that capability, in my mind, is going to be there. and i would offer to you that as one of the early f-22 pilots that i was, we had some of the same letteriarning curve issues. across the regime of where we were going to deploy it how to get the most out of the airplane. that's what we're going to do and i think the airplane's going to deliver, sir. >> appreciate your reference to that. even the wright brothers after they invented the plane had to learn to become pilots. we appreciate that pros. i want to ask you non-committee members be allowed to participate in today's hearing and mr. cooper, after all subcommittee members have had an opportunity to ask questions, if i hear no objections, non-subcommittee members will be recognized at the appropriate time for five minutes. turning now to the next questioner which will be -- mr. waltz. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
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generals, thank you for taking the time to come and for continuing to update us on this. i think it's critically important. i want to go back to april's hearing because i think it's important for us to build on what we asked and to get on. in that hearing, i asked what is our next hearing going to look like when we come? at that point in time secretary stackly said, we'll have the united states marine corps version, completion of 3-f and 3-f testing, and see the end of r&d costs. are those things panning out? >> the marine corps has declared ioc and is flying operational missions at yuma today, sir. so i would put a check in that box. we are completed with all mission system testing for 3-i. we intend on delivering 3-i software to the field in january. as general said we have handed that software to the o.t. testers to ring it out so i put
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a check mark there. for 3-f i'm not sure if mr. stackly was referencing when we would have 3-f done but i have always contended and told this committee that i thought that the schedule for 3-f had four to six months of risk in it. i just recently did another schedule risk analysis and took a look at our schedule and our plans. what i will tell you is that four to six-month risk is now down to three to four months. and we believe that the full three-f software capability on this airplane for the "a" model will be out into the the field in august of 2017. that's a good year before the navy needs it for ioc, a good six months before the sectef has to certify the airplane is going to be fully 3-f capability. i think that risk is working its way down. as we get out of the business of testing 2-b, which we're done with, and 3-i, the entire test fleet is being transferred over to 3-f and therefore i think
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we're going to catch it up. >> thank you, general, that's helpful. i think it is important for us to see where we're at, and we know that these are -- it's hard to get it exactly right. can you explain what the concurrence is with the marine corps on -- where i'm getting the folks that there's a little controversy on what they're saying. they're flying theirs, their ioc. that's for their mission? it's good with them. >> yes, sir. in fact, i would say that they are now flying the airplane operationally. they're out employing the airplane in the missions that they had described for their ioc. and i think the result has been very positive and the feedback from them has been well received. >> i might add that the services define for me what they need to declare ioc. and the u.s. marine corps takes
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a look at the legacy airplanes that they have and how they intend on employing the airplane and they created a list of criteria that they needed to make to declare ioc. the air force has done the same thing. they are different lists because the air force intended on using the f-35 differently than the marine corps. my promise to the air force is i will give them everything they need to declare ioc by august of 2016. but they will fly the airplane differently and use it in a different way than the marine corps. >> okay. and general bogdan, you did a nice job last time explaining to a layman what happened to that june 23rd fire, the heat issue and all of that. where is that at at this point in terms of corrections? >> sir, we have already validated the full correction to the engine problem. every engine coming off the production line since about seven months ago had the fix in it. so we're producing fully capable engines right now on the production line.
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we have 134 airplanes out in the field today. 61 of them have been retrofit with the new parts so that there's no longer a restriction on them. that's about 44%. by june of 2016, all 134 fielded airplanes will have the same fix in them that the production airplanes are now going down the production line with. so in my mind, it was a problem, it was unfortunate, but we're putting it behind us. >> did we learn anything that goes beyond the specific issue in that in terms of the testing standard in that of what we can extrapolate going forward from that incident? >> one of the thins that we did learn was that the design of that portion of the engine is very similar to other fighters that we have. and there was an assumption made that since those other fighters didn't have this problem, that the f-35 wouldn't have this problem. so some of the engineering
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analysis, i won't say it was shortcut because that's not the right word, but some of the assumptions they made in the original engineering analysis assumed the engine was going to react as if it were in the other airplane and that was not the case. that was not the case because the f-35 maneuvers differently than that other airplane and the engine actually shifts and moves and bends differently than that other airplane, causing that -- >> will that change now as we go forward? i hate to use the term we will not -- we assume that they will not do that in the future. that they will go back to the beginning. >> so part of what we did was we ensured that the models that both the government and the engine manufacturer pratt and whitney was using incorporated the new knowledge about the f-35 and the assumptions that we made when we first designed it. so at least for this engine, sir, we're not going to make that same mistake and pratt and
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whitney has learned that lesson. >> i yield back, mr. chairman. >> thank you. mr. cook. >> thank you, mr. chairman. generals, there was an election this week in canada. and it appears mr. trudeau is going to be the winner of that election. correct me if i'm wrong. but i believe he made some preelection statements that canada would not purchase the f-35s. and i think they were in for 65. and so the question is about affordability. if a partner drops out of that, and i don't even know -- aim not a lawyer. i'm dangerous enough as a marine at one time is that going to have an impact on cost or what have you? >> i'm pretty sure this is my question. so let me start off by saying,
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it wouldn't be appropriate for me to speculate what canada will or won't do. so i won't provide any opinion about that. and i will also tell you that i have received no official motivation from canada about the change in taught for them today. having said that, i'm prepared to tell you what the impact to the program would be if that were the case. let me exchain that to you. >> so first, the current development program that ends in 2017, there would be no effect whatsoever if canada were no longer a partner. because they had paid all the money into the development program and all the services have already paid and we intend on finishing the development program with the mop we have are so there would be no effect on the current development program. not the case for production and the price of the airplane. fae partner or any service moves airplanes did the right or takes airplanes out, the pry of the airplane for all the other
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partners and all the other fmf customers and all the other services goes up a little bit. in this instance, if there are 65 less a-model airplanes in that production profile, from any country, whether it be cab dan or someone else are we have estimated that the increase in price to everyone else is 0.7 to 1%. for an "a" model today that's about $1 million a copy. for everybody else. so there is an impact to the price of the airplane for everyone else if 65 airplanes are removed from the production flow. there are other impacts. going forward, we have a follow-on modernization program and we have future sustainment of the airplane that the partnership shares in that cost. canada's share of that cost was ther 2.1%. if canada is no longer in the program that 2.1% cost of future
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sustainment and follow-on modernization will have to be spread among the other partners and the other u.s. services. because that is a cost that has to be paid and it wouldn't be paid by a partner who's no longer a partner. the lost one has to do with industrial participation. today there are many canadian companies building pieces and parts for the f-35 program. we do not have a set rule as to what happens if that industrial participation if a partner reduces airplanes, adds airplanes, or even leaves the program. there are no set rules. but it is my opinion that the remaining partners and our industry partners are going to have a discussion about what to do with all of the industry in canada is building pieces and parts for the airplane. >> thank you, general. i have one more question. i apologize for the nature of
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the question. this is an infantry guy who's going to ask a logistics question. i did have to serve as a logistics officer and it left an indelible mark on me. not very good, i might add. you know, we get more and more questions about the engine, everything else. i'm thinking about the maintenance of a brand-new fifth-generation aircraft that i guess it would be fourth and fifth maintain nance, degrees of maintenance, that we'd have to do. do we have the parts and the technicians that are in place right away to handle this very, very sophisticated piece of gear? or are we going to have to change on the fly and is there money available for that? >> so i'll answer the first part of that and let general hurrigan give his perspective. as the airplane continues to mature we are building a maintenance force through training at example lin air force base that continues to
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have to understand the changes we make to the airplane. because we're not done developing it. and older airplanes believe it or not are being maintained differently than the newer airplanes. quite frankly the newer airplanes are in better shape. we will have to continue to update the maintenance manuals, the parts supply chain, and things until we get the fleet of airplanes up to a common standard. w you are right that we will have to continue to train our air force as we continue to change the airplane and i don't think that will change for quite a while. >> mr. mullin. >> thank you, mr. chairman. gentlemen, thank you very much for your service and for taking on this difficult project. i know you haven't been asked to bring the best-looking date to the dance. and that's not an easy thing to do.
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i'm new to this, relative. my background is also as an infantryman. i have always taken the perspective on the f-they've there are a lot of miss high takes that have been made, an awful lot of costs, fund that is have been arguably waepsed over the years. this is far more expensive than any of us anticipated. but we're far enough down the line now where we've just got to make it work. would you agree with that statement? >> sir, i would agree that without arm chair quarterbacking or trying to figure out why decisions were made in the past, that we have incurred significant schedule and cost increases in the past on the program. some of them are normal to programs, others were a result of decisions that were made. what i would like to add, though, is since we rebaselined the program in 2011, we have nod had a single cost increase and
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we have nod asked congress or the partners for an added penny since 2011. >> which is a great achievement but it's quite a baseline. >> oh, yes, sir. i would agree with you in 2011, when we were rebaselined, we added two years and a few billion to the program. >> several analysts have commented that one of the fundamental mistakes may have been trying to incorporate so many mission capabilities into a single aircraft, rather than having aircraft built for more specific specifications. the f-22 in contrast with the f-35 most folks think is quite successful. would you agree with that statement as well? >> i know very little about the f-22 program. i'll ask the general who flew the airplane to comment on that. >> in the early years of f-22, we had some of the very similar types of problems. from software, fusion, taking
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software from the lab and making it work in the airplane. quite frankly i think that's why the chief asked me to do this job because there were some lessons that we needed to make sure we brought forward into the f-35. so my response would be, while single-mission airplanes which initially we thought the f-22 was going to be, we ended up making it multi-mission because we needed it it for capacity across the joint fight. we looked at the f-35, we needed it to accomplish several mission sets, so that as we looked into the future we had the capacity we needed to execute all those different missions for the joint force commander. >> i guess when where i'm coming at fundamentally are there are an awful lot of folks on the committee and congress in general who feel like we've invested a lot of money and we've got to make sure this thing works. you don't make economic decisions based on sum costs. so my question is who in the air
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force is looking at this project from a much higher level and saying, is this still the best decision to buy the number of airplanes we have, or should we be talking about potentially, not for certain, potentially devoting resources to accelerating the development of the next generation of aircraft? or perhaps accelerating the development of a next generation of aircraft multiple that would fulfill different mission sets and maybe not be susceptible to the same problems this program has encountered? >> yes, sir. in fact, the chief has directed, and they're actually reporting to him, what's called an enterprise capability team to get exactly after your question of, as we look into 2030, what should this look like? as we go forward and we look at the required mikth of what capabilities we need verses the future threats that we envision out there, what is the right mix
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of capabilities that the air force will need? they're to report out to him in the early part of next year. i think that will be a real good opportunity to get a better understanding how we see ourselves moving forward. >> mr. chairman, i would respectfully request that we swa entertain that discussion as part of our debate about the f-they've. it's very easy in this environment to get so consumed of the challenges and program problems of this one program to not be thinking ahead from the perspective of think about what the best decisions are going forward to meet the threats of 2030, which could indeed include cutting back on the current program. so thank you very much and i yield my time. >> i invite you, we go to eglin to look at the operation of the plane, we have a number of classified briefings that will give you greater fidelity of what this plane does and what the needs and threats are. i think at that point you'll probably be very satisfied. i appreciate that we
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continuously ask that question. it's not a question we should ever stop asking. i think as you become familiar with what the operational capabilities of this plane are. that you'll similarly come to the same conclusion that we did in the national defense authorization act. >> we shall see, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, gentlemen. let me say i'm one of those pilots that would be at the quote-unquote edges of the envelope of what you talked about there. i'd have to gain about 15 pounds in order to be able to fly the f-35 today. so i understand the switcher roo thing you're talking about that the pilots are going to have to move, delaying the chute coming out, is that putting them in increased risk, in a 0-0 situation where obviously every nano second actually counts? >> yeah, actually, as it turns out, match, for a lightweight pilot, talladedelaying the open
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the chute until the seat slows down does not increase at all the risk of ground impact or that pilot getting out of the seat. because a lightweight pilot in the cat as a result phase gets shot up high ever so we had mar gyp. >> let me say, like the chairman said, we need a fifth-generation fighter capability. strong supporter of us relevanting this capability. as an airman myself became take for granted air prrt and what that take and making sure we have denied access. i've been to the fak 3 and strongly support us developing this capability for our national security and the war fighter. i am concerned that this airplane is releasing all our legacy fighters and the jack of all trades, master of none. and specifically replacing the a-10 in the close air support missions that it uniquely brings to the fight. when we talked in april we had a discussion about some limitations in that replacement of the unique capability and
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close air support. i'll run through them as a reminder. in the a-model some of these were nice capability, lack of the ability to pass nine lines via data, time on station being 20 to 30 minutes. in the follow-on capabilities, mu anythings only 180 bullets. time to station 45 minutes. dr. gilmore agreed the f-35 would not be able to survive a direct hit. like the a-10 can. and still allow the pilot to at least fly into friendly territory so they're not taken p.o.w. and lit on fire in a cage like we've seen happen to the jordanian pilots. these are important capabilities. the shortfalls were identified in the april hearing. i was glad to see in august dr. gilmore announce there would be a head-to-head test against the a-10 and f-35. i don't want to put words in your mouth. i think you were not supportive of that test? i think you said it wasn't a good use of taxpayers' money? i disagree with you there,
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general bogdan, i think it's a very good use of taxpayer money. if the f-35 is going to iplace the a-10 we need to identify whether we're going to have a decrease in the unique capabilities in the that mission set. that includes the loiter time, the lethality, 1174 bullets, the ability to take a direct hit, and all that the a-10 brings to the fight. so i just wanted to get your perspective on the record about that head-to-head test, how that came about. and also i'm skeptical about it, quite frankly, with all the things we've seen the air force try to do to go against the will of this congress and backdoor retiring the a-10. you can set up a test to have any sort of result you want. so is the test going to specifically address not high-end, high-sophisticated air defense circumstances, but where we have air superiority and those unique capabilities of the loiter time, lethality, maneuverability, and to do a continuous cast fight and take a direct hit, will that be a part of that test?
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>> ma'am, if you don't mind, i'll come back first. i think you're probably fall yart chief came back and said we're supportive of executing comparative testing -- >> after he called it silly, but yes. >> at this point we're working closely with our air force operational test center folks. working closely with dotne to formulate exactly what that test will look like. specifically looking at multiple scenarios, both in the contested and permissive environments. looking at different ranges. time to arrive on target, loiter time, all those types of things will be incorporated for the appropriate analysis to ensure that at the end of the day we're delivering the platform that's effective and suitable in the environments we're going to operate it in. >> great. i'm interested in continuing to interact and see how that test going. general bogdan, do you have anything else to add? >> yes, ma'am. what you described is exactly what i think should be done with the f-35. that is, test it in ra realistic
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operational environment for the cast mission that the air force intends the f-35 to do. not the cast mission that the air force intends the f-35 to, do looking like an a-10. the problem that i have is that money that i'm going to spend doing the testing on the a-10 could be used elsewhere. and i know the outcome of that test. i'll give you an example. you have a deck athlete in the olympics, you have a 100-meter sprinter. fy put the 100-meter sprinter and the deck athlete on the starting line for a 100-meter sprint, i don't know who's going to win it. i don't need to test the a-10 to figure out what the f-35 can do in a close air support role. what i would prefer to do is test the air-355 as the air force sees the requirements for that mission for the f-35. >> i hear you and i'm out of
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time. but i think us envisioning that we're never going to have close air support where guys are on the run, they're out of ammo, they're doing a mirror flash into your eye, they don't have time to do standoff casts because of the complex circumstances, if we think that's never going to happen again? i think we're lying to ourselves. >> you are correct, you're out of time. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. ranking member sanchez. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and first of all, thank you for holding this. because as you know, you and i have been through a lot of growing pains on this f-35 program. and i know people have mentioned they've been down to the factory. we've been to the factory and we've been to the factory overseas and we've been to see them in action and we've been to talk to the pilots and we've been and we've been and we've been. so what we have on our hands is the fact that this is going to be our production plane for the future. so we've got to make sure that it's the best that we have.
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the best that we need. i think the gentleahe lady from arizona is correct in saying she supports this and i also am glad for her knowledge of fighter planes and i don't know if i'm glad for your persistence on keeping the a-10, i don't know where i am on that, really. but i'm glad that you're on and that you're asking the questions and that you keep hitting it. because we need to, as well as -- i'm sorry for coming late but i heard the gentleman from massachusetts have some concerns and some follow-up. so that's the role of this subcommittee. so thank you to my fellow colleagues for continuing to push and continuing to push our program people to make sure that we get the best plane that we need.
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i have a couple of questions. the first has to do with the 136-pound weight limitation. so i have been one of the people on this committee that has pushed for women in more roles in the military. and the gentle lady from arizona acknowledged that she weighs a lot less than i do. and my question is, i'm concerned with the long-term weight limitation and if it disadvantages our female pilots and their eligibility to fly the. >> the f-35 because our women do tend to be lower in weight. if the 136-pound weight limitation remains in place for more than a few more weeks how is that going to impact the follow-on on the cadres of the female pilots that we have in the air force? and have any of our female pilots already been sort of
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diverted off of going towards the f-35 because of this weight limitation? >> ma'am, i'll answer the technical part of that and let general horriqan answer the part about air force pilots. we have known fixes to the problems that currently restrict the pilot population to less than 136 pounds. they include a lighter helmet. they include a weight switch on the seat. they include a pad on the back of the risers of the parachute that prevent anybody's neck from moving forward or aft too much. all those solutions should be in place within the next 12 to 18 months. and at that point in time, the restriction should be removed and we will go down to 103-pound pilot as well as the size of the pilot is not an issue. but we designed the seat for the
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smallest and lightest folks. so i think you'll find that in the next 18 months or so, we will make this ejection seat as safe as we possibly can for the entire population. i'll let gone horrigan talk about the pilot through-put and female pilots. >> thanks, ma'am. so we had one pilot that was less than 136 pounds, in fact a male, and so he's no longer flying the f-35. and due to where he was in his career, his leadership decided it's best we move him to another airplane so he can continue his career. we have a female that's flying the airplane right now. she's still flying the airplane right now. but to your point, i think the longer term is we didn't have anybody in the pipeline right now that was impacted. but certainly if this takes 12 to 18 months, there may be a person or persons out there that it could impact.
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so that's something we're going to have to take a look at. as you're well aware, the secretary and the chief are -- have made it clear that 103 pounds to 245 is our requirement and general bogdanica knows that's where we need to go and he knows we're working hard to get there. >> great. i would hate for that to be the reason for our women to not be able to move forward. >> congressman, can i make one other -- >> -- our next real generation plane for the next 20 or 30 years. >> could i make one other comment? we have partners and fms customers in the program that are equally concerned about this problem because much of their population of pilots, whether he be male or female, are on the lower end of the scale. and so i have heard from many partners, many fms customers, as
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well as the air force, navy, marine corps, about how important this is to fix and it has my full attention, ma'am. >> greating. thank you, general. my last question is about the follow-on development for the f-35. and so while the initial engineering, manufacturing and development stage of the f-35 program is supposedly going to be wrapping up in the next two years, there's another, more potentially and very expensive follow-on development that we already have slated for the future of this program. and the follow-on effort is mostly software upgrades that i can tell as i read through everything, is mostly software upgrades to incorporate additional weapons and electronic capability into the aircraft. but even though it's just an upgrade effort, the budget is not small. i mean, when i look at it, through 2020 i see more than $2.6 billion in research and development on that effort projected.
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to be clear, that's on top of the baseline f-35 development effort that has seen years of delay and cost overruns and i don't want to go over all of that because you've heard me pounce on that for a long time now. i know these further upgrades are essential but i think it's important for us to try to get a handle on this before it gets out of whack as we've seen initially this are this project from the very beginning. i have some specific questions about the follow-on effort. first, before the program starts this major effort, it obviously needs a clear set of prioritized requirements from the u.s. military services and from our foreign partners that are involved in this. and so does the f-35 program have a prioritized list from the
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u.s. military services with respect to what it really wants in the follow-on development? and if not, why not? >> yes, ma'am. you have boiled this down to the essence of one of the issues with follow-on development today. with 14 different customers, we have a large amount of requirements that i today believe are unaffordable. so as we validate the cdd, the capability document, through the air force requirements oversight council, and then up to the joint requirements oversight council, and i go to the -- what i call my board of directors for the partners, we have asked them to prioritize that list of requirements. because today, i believe that
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trying to achieve all those requirements in the next eight to ten years will be unaffordable. so the process has begun. we believe in december we will get our first look at that set of priorities. and then in the springtime when the afric and jroc meet to validate the requirements, i believe that's where we will finally join all this together to get what i would consider to be a reasonable amount of requirements that are affordable. because i do not disagree with you, ma'am. i have learned a lot of lessons in three years on what the original emd program looked like. i don't want the follow-on program to look anything like that. >> because the follow-on program -- as you know, i mean, we've really gone through very painful, on both sides, very painful -- this has been a painful process. and that's a nice word for it. so this development and what everybody wants and how it
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interacts and what it gets i think is incredibly important to have that priority list. i'll look forward to that in december 2015 and i will look forward to it after your capability document validation. second, in other similar upgrade programs, congress has required the d.o.d. to designate them as major subprograms. or completely separate programs, actually. and the reason for that has been to -- so that we can actually see the cost visibility and we can actually track what is going on. so should congress do the same thing with this follow-on effort for the f-35? and if not, why not? >> the simple answer is, no, ma'am. i'll tell you why not. so first, my pledge to this committee and to the other defense committees and to my partners and to the services is, we will set up the follow-on modernization program with every level of visibility and
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transparency that you and they believe they need for that appropriate oversight. we'll put the earned value management pieces in there. we will cost separate in the contracts so you can see how we are spending the money. but to make this a separate program, or even to make it a separate program, brings a whole host of administrative burdens that mr. kendall wants to try and avoid to become more agile in terms of acquisition. i agree with him. i think we can set up a program that satisfies the needs of everyone in terms of transparency and understanding when the program is on track and not on track without designating it as its own program. my promise to the committees is, if you don't believe when we get our acquisition strategy in place that you don't like that, then we will come and talk to you and figure out what you do like. i have asked your staffs to help
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us in what you would like to see in that modernization program in terms of reporting. because we can do that. we can do that without setting up a separate program. >> well, we'll have to talk to our staff and see, you know, what we'll look at. maybe a program, a separate line might be required if we're really going to track this. i just -- i just have the scars from the initial program, you know. even before the three years you've been in. so thank you very much for your information. we'll try to work with you. thank you. mr. chairman, thank you. >> if i can add to that, as the war fighter, ma'am, understanding the programmatics and the importance of ensuring we've got our prioritized requirements which we are working hard as a service with the other services to make sure we've got it right, i think it's important to remember the threat is not sitting on their hands. and they continue to evolve. so from our perspective, it's
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imperative that we have a stabilized, thoughtful follow-on modernization program that brings new capabilities to this airplane so we stay ahead of the curve. and ma'am, that's all i'd like to ensure that the committee remembers as we work our way through this. thank you. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i wanted to ask you about the helmet too. i know you want to make changes to the helmet. so it is more compatible for all the pilots in the air force. i know that's going to be a really big priority for you. but i wanted to ask you about the hmds. because i know that that is a big part of what makes the f-35 special is the helmet itself. and that there's been a lot of technology put into it. and one of the things that we've heard in previous hearings that we've had on sequester was that being able to implement new technology under a sequester system can be tough. so working under sequester how
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quickly can changes be made to the helmet? >> the changes and the improvements we're making to the helmet, congressman, are part of the broper std program. because our std program is incrementally funded, even with a cr or a sequestration, we would still be able to continue those critical development activities like the helmet. we would ensure that those kind of things are not impacted. there are many other thins that would be impacted. but in this respect, finishing the development program and creating the capability that we promised the war fighter is our number one priority. and i think we can do that. there's many other impacts but not that one. >> and one more question about the helmet itself. again, i know just the incredible technology that has gone into developing the helmet. and again, being able to make questioning changes to the
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helmet so everybody can fly. is it more realistic to make changes to, like, the head support panel or delaying the deployment of the parachute in order to make it to where all the pilots can fly the plane instead of actually trying to make very complicated technology changes to the helmet? >> congressman, the simple answer to your question is, no, we need a lighter helmet. it's as simple as that. all the other things that you talked about are also needed to ensure that we have safe escape for the whole pilot population but we do have to take weight out of the helmet. the one pointed like to make about taking weight out of the helmet is we are not changing any of the electronics, we are not changing any of the sensors in the helmet. to remove the six ounces that we need to the helmet to get it underweight, what we're doing is taking the material that's used
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tor for the strapping and the cushioning of the helmet and change that material to something lighter and stronger. and the second thing that we're doing is, today's helmet has a dual visor on it. daytime visor and a nighttime visor. we are going to remove the double visor and put a simply daytime visor on it such that if the pilot needs to change to the nighttime visor just like the legacy airplanes, he or she will reach into their pocket and take the daytime visor off and put the nighttime visor on. those two are fairly simple things to do. now, i never want to say anything is easy in the f-35 program because nothing is ever easy. but in this instance here, i think we've got it just about right because we're not going to mess with any of the high technology things that make that helmet what it is. >> okay. good. thank you. mr. chairman, thank you very much. >> mr. grant. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you both for your service.
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thank you for being here. as a north floridian, boast egeland and tendle, incredibly important. your service with so many men and women in north florida is certainly appreciated. so thank you. mr. chairman, went dead we go on that kodel. >> in march. >> and it was so informative. and really impressed with the f-35. there was one area that, though, there was consistent concern both with the pilots and with the maintenance, those what maintained the airplanes. and i'm not going to use an acronym because i've ernd la the not use acronyms but it's got a snappy one. but it's autonomic logistics system, aka alice. so there were real concerns about false, you know, errors reporting. and i'm just curious, have we
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resolved some of the software issues that alice was facing? thank you so much. >> i'll give you the technical answer and i'll let the general give you the war fighter's perspective. so since your visit down there we took a look at that health reporting code problem. and we've done a number of things since then that have improved the situation. the first thing we did was, we put a new increment of software and capability into the alice system. we call it alice 2.01. that fixed one of the problems. another part of the problem is we did not have a complete list of those codes that were false, so to speak, at the time. and we were worried that if we made the list too big, that a code that really wasn't false would get overlooked. we have a lot more time on the airplane now and a lot more maturity in the airplane. so we were able to upgrade that list. bottom line here is, 80% number
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that you heard down at egeland, which wassing accurate, for the entire fleet today is half that now. that's not the best part of the story, because that's the whole fleet. the best part of the story is lot six and lot seven airplanes we are fielding today, because they have many of the r and, many improvements that we made over the last two years, they are only seeing a very small handful, like ones and twos when they land each and every day. so that 40% now that used to be 80% includes all the older airplanes that until they're upgraded, they're going to still have that issue. but the newer airplanes, much better. general has some experience with the new l lot seven airplanes that they've been using and he might be able to tell you more. >> those airplane, ma'am, we have three of them up there. and they have not lost since they delivered them. as we have delivered these newer airplanes, they are performing
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really, really well. and egeland still had some of the older ones so they struggle with some of the older systems that the program office has continued to update over time, even since last march as general bogdon points out. so it continues to improve. having said that, there's still going to be challenges as we understand alice and put our maintainers in the field working with that system with the program office. i'll tell you one of the things we did is we had our senior logistic leaders from all the f-35 bases and the folks come together to talk about what are the big issues. this of course was one of them. we provided a list of some specific things, this fault reporting code issue being one of them, that we have worked very closely with the program office to get feedback from our airmen in the field and get them to the program office so they can work through and prioritize those to get to the most
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important issues to ensure we're fixing the right things on the airplane. >> well, that is really great to hear because i could hear the frustration that they were faced with all of these false negatives that they were having to deal with. is it -- you mentioned other airplanes. are they using the same software system they're using alice? >> yeah, all the airplanes in the fleet are using alice. it's just the newer airplanes have many of the fixes in terms of software and hardware that we learned from the older airplanes. so if you went to egeland today what you would find on their flight line is airplanes that are in what we call the block one configuration, believe it or not, and 2a configuration. when those airplanes get con fig rated to the 2b configuration or block three con fig lags, you're going to find a lot of those problems have gone away. we just haven't had time to back fit and modify those older
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airplanes. >> great. my time has expired. thank you very much. good, positive update. thank you. >> mr. chairman, thank you for the accommodation and thank you, generals, for your presentation and for your service. i wanted to be clear, did you say in your opening testimony that you have accepted -- you have received 79 f-35s to date? >> yes, ma'am. in the air force we have. >> so with the 79 that you've received do they all have this ejection seat issue? >> yes, ma'am. every airplane. >> now, i understand that you tested the ejection seat on lighter -- on a mannequin that was 135 pounds. i also understood you tested it on a 245-pound mannequin but it
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has not been tested on a mannequin between the weight of 135 and 245, is that correct? >> in the development test program we do have those test points planned out. but you are correct, as of today, we've done the high end and the low end. >> so my concern is this. if we know there's a problem on the low end, we haven't tested it for those who are likely to be most pilots, between the weight of 135 and 245, and we have them in these planes now testing them, are we putting any of them at risk? >> the answer to that is no, ma'am, because we have done the risk analysis on the test points that we have had on the ejection
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seat. what we have found is the only area where we have a problem today is with the light-weight pilot below 136 pounds because when we have tested throughout the envelope -- you can't test every point for every weight. but the areas that we have tested indicate that in the heart of the envelope, for the heart of the pilot population, there is not any increased risk of injury at all. i can show you that analysis, ma'am. >> all right. thank you. >> ma'am, from the service perspective, we have a life cycle management center that is part of our airworthiness organization. and they have -- ma'am, to be clear, i talked with the guys who had been working with us for 30 years because clearly this is an important issue for us and we share and talk have been closely with the program office with this. they've shown us the chart, how it lays out.
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and what the risk levels are. and so as general bogdon said, there are certain risks there. we've accepted it, except the low end beneath 136 pounds. >> well, there's been some report that there's been a memo that you accepted general bogdon, that accepted a 1 in 4 risk of death with a problem with the ejection system as being a risk that is worth taking, i guess. is that correct? >> ma'am, that is incorrect. the data that you have came from a reporter who got a copy of an official use only internal dod document that my team put together to assess the risks of a lightweight pilot and a pilot between 136 and 165 pounds. that document


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