|Sen. Chuck Grassley|
“The longer we wait, the more we will fail the men and women who choose to serve in our country’s military,” Grassley said. “The Military Justice Improvement Act will bring the change that public pressure will not and cannot. There’s an old Washington expression that trying to turn around a bureaucracy is like trying to turn around an aircraft carrier. It takes time and effort. When it comes to military justice, we don’t have the luxury of waiting for the aircraft carrier to turn around. We need action, now.”
Grassley joined a bipartisan group of colleagues at a press conference to renew the push for passage of their bipartisan Military Justice Improvement Act. The legislation would remove the decision of whether to prosecute serious crimes such as sexual assault from military commanders, who have a lack of independence from both perpetrators and victims.
Led by the bill’s main sponsor, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, the news conference featured former Air Force Chief Prosecutor Colonel Don Christensen (Ret.), who served as chief prosecutor for four years. Christensen was featured in a New York Times Magazine cover story this past Sunday. He said he has left the military after 23 years because it was impossible to fix the system from the inside.Postscript: New York Times coverage of the renewed fight for Sen. Gillibrand's bill can be found here.