Issue Position: National Security

Issue Position

John Tierney's "subcommittee has a reputation for taking on thorny oversight issues the House Armed Services Committee shies away from, and Tierney is not known to pull his punches."

--Foreign Policy Magazine Online

November 24, 2009

John Tierney is a proven leader in the Congress in the areas of national security and foreign affairs, and has developed an international reputation as a guardian of taxpayer funds. Through his service as Chairman of the Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs and as a member of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, he has the vision and expertise necessary to push sensible national security policy during a time in which we are ensnared in two wars overseas and an economic crunch here at home.

John has become a leading voice on matters related to the war in Afghanistan, aid to Pakistan and our effort to defeat Al Qaeda along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. He has led four fact-finding oversight missions to the region, held 19 related hearings and passed significant reform legislation designed to enhance accountability of U.S. funds.

A persistent critic of the decision to go to war in Iraq, John continues to closely monitor the U.S. withdrawal to ensure that it is done responsibly, safely and accountably. He continues to scrutinize the proliferation of private security contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan.

With so many people here in Massachusetts suffering during these difficult economic times, John is ever mindful of the need to make every taxpayer dollar count. As such, he is a vigilant watchdog of our defense and national security agencies. He has led investigations that have exposed billions of dollars of fraud, waste, and abuse. Now more than ever, we need to bring sanity to our defense spending.

For example, he exposed billions of dollars of unaccounted for military reimbursement to Pakistan, which resulted in significant tightened oversight by the Department of Defense and the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad. Similarly, he authored the legislation that created the Commission on Wartime Contracting that has as its sole mission to investigate allegations of war profiteering.

John has deep respect for the service and sacrifice of our armed forces and civilians deployed to war zones. In 2007, he led Congress' investigation of the deplorable conditions that some of our combat wounded and their families endured at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. His leadership resulted in significant improvements in care for wounded warriors. And, like so many issues, John sustains his oversight long after the cameras and reporters have moved on to other stories -- It's about follow-through. Since that first high-profile Walter Reed hearing, he has held three more hearings and continues to periodically visit our wounded at Walter Reed to ensure they are getting the treatment they need and deserve.

Similarly, he has been a true champion of the victims of sexual assault in the military. His investigations exposed the failure of our military leadership to protect soldiers from some who disgraced their uniform. His efforts have led to significant additional resources and attention to the scourge of sexual assault. And, he has held four hearings over the last two years to ensure that the military maintains its newfound momentum.

He discovered the sale of sensitive military equipment on Ebay, brought to light reports of human trafficked labor in building the U.S. Embassy in Iraq and exposed vulnerabilities in the GPS satellite system relied on by warfighters in Iraq and firefighters in Salem. He has investigated matters ranging from U.S. energy security and Latin America, to the effectiveness of sanctions in Iran, to drug-related violence along the U.S.-Mexico border and to the genocide in Darfur.

These are but a few examples of John's leadership on matters of national security. The people of the 6th District of Massachusetts can count on John Tierney to ask the tough questions and get to the heart of the matter on the most important issue any national leader must face: keeping us safe.