By Kyle Midura
December 12, 2016
The battle over bringing the F-35 fighter jet to Burlington took a turn Monday with a tweet by President-elect Donald Trump.
Just before a pair of F-35s touched down in Israel, a tweet from President-elect Donald Trump sent the manufacturer’s stock into a free-fall. “The F-35 program and cost is out of control,” he wrote, “Billions of dollars can and will be saved on military (and other) purchases after January 20th.”
The F-35 accounted for 20-percent of Lockheed Martin’s total revenue last year. Morning trading saw shares in the company fall by more than 4-percent.
Some estimates place the cost of designing and building the planes at $400 billion — currently costing more than $100 million per plane.
Eighteen of the planes are set to land in Vermont in 2019. Vermont Air National Guard officials say they won’t speculate on the meaning of Trump’s tweet or what it means for the jets’ future here. They passed our request for comment to the Department of Defense.[FULL ARTICLE]