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King: Congress will restore destroyer funding to budget

July 7, 2021 GMT

BATH,Maine (AP) — U.S. Sen. Angus King said Wednesday that a destroyer that was cut from the budget by the Biden administration will be restored by Congress.

“The president proposes, but Congress disposes, so we’ll have the final word on this budget,” said King, who called the destroyer’s attempted removal ”a strategic and financial mistake.”

King, an independent, and Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Golden accompanied Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks on a tour of Bath Iron Works on Wednesday, the Times Record reported.

Hicks, who did not speak to reporters, departed afterward for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, where she toured the USS Texas, a nuclear-powered submarine that’s undergoing a modernization.

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News that the Biden administration wanted to cut one of two destroyers from the budget was cause for alarm for Bath Iron Works, which builds them, and for Maine’s congressional delegation.

Last week, the House Appropriations Committee released its draft defense funding bill that restored the funding. King said he’ll be working from the Senate to do the same.

King serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee and Golden is vice-chair of the House Armed Services seapower subcommittee.