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Pitts Urges S.C. Delegation to Support F-35 Program

September 14, 2017

COLUMBIA, S.C. – South Carolina Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Ted Pitts today urged members of South Carolina’s congressional delegation to support the growth of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 program for the good of the state, the nation and America’s allies around the globe.

In letters to the delegation, Pitts wrote:

The Honorable Lindsey Graham
290 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Senator Graham:

As you know Lockheed Martin is a valued member of South Carolina’s business community and supports thousands of jobs.  I reach out today asking you to support the growth of the F-35 program, for the good of our state, our nation, and America’s allies around the globe.

As we seek to improve South Carolina’s business climate and create well-paying jobs, the F-35 program is showing impressive results.

Already, our state is a growing choice for the defense industry due to the presence of large-scale military installations and outstanding business climate. South Carolina is home to seven aerospace suppliers making components for the F-35. As the program grows, South Carolina is poised to attract new aerospace jobs. But the economic impact of the F-35 is only partially seen with suppliers in our state.

Beaufort is home to one of the first bases in the U.S. for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and home to the Lockheed Martin Marine Corps Pilot Training Center, where America’s men and women in uniform are becoming mission-ready.  The Pilot Training Center and other F-35 activities in Beaufort are having important economic impact there, and as the program matures, with more military personnel in the area to support these activities, economic impact will continue to grow.

On behalf of South Carolina’s business community, I want to personally thank you for your strong support of the F-35 program. In every way possible, I encourage you to continue supporting the growth and development of America’s next-generation fighter jet, for the protection of our troops and for the good of South Carolina.

Thank you for supporting the F-35 program as a beneficial step for our state economy.”


Ted Pitts


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