U.S. Representative Candice Miller (MI-10) today made the following statement on the status of furloughed members of our National Guard who will now be called back to work and receive their paycheck. Nearly 900 of Michigan's National Guard, of which approximately 650 civilians and military technicians are employed by the 127th Wing at Selfridge Air National Guard Base (ANGB), were originally furloughed. Over the weekend, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced his decision to issue new guidance on implementation of the Pay Our Military Act (H.R.3210 - Public Law No: 113-39, the Pay Our Military Act), reversing his decision to furlough members of our active duty armed forces, including the National Guard. Miller said:
"It was so unnecessary for these active duty members of our National Guard to ever be furloughed, particularly after the passage of the Pay Our Military Act which should have stopped furloughs for any active duty military members. One can only conclude that the Administration took these actions in order to cause the maximum amount of pain on members of our military during a government shutdown. To make matters worse, these furloughs clearly weakened our national security posture for no reason other than to try to score political points. Every unnecessarily furloughed member of the Guard based at Selfridge ANGB will be recalled to duty.
"Last week I also voted in favor of legislation, H.R.3230 - Pay Our Guard and Reserve Act, which will provide funding to make certain that Guardsmen and women on inactive status continue to be paid and to train during a government shutdown. The House acted by passing this bill with a broad bipartisan majority, but the Senate has so far refused to act and the President has threatened to veto this important legislation. The readiness status of every very single member of our National Guard and Reserve is essential for the protection of our great nation and the security of our state and inaction by the Senate and the refusal by the President, our Commander-in-Chief, to support this provision is totally unacceptable."
Last week, Rep. Miller signed on to a bipartisan letter to Secretary Hagel demanding that he follow the law (H.R.3210 - Public Law No: 113-39, the Pay Our Military Act) and reinstate members of the Guard who had been improperly furloughed. Click here to view the bipartisan letter Rep. Miller and her colleagues sent to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.