WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John Barrasso (R-WY), Tina Smith (D-MN), and Cynthia Lummis’s (R-WY) bipartisan amendment to ensure the Air Force maintains at least 271 C-130 aircraft across all components of the Air Force passed the Senate in the Fiscal Year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). These planes are used to carry out critical missions at home and overseas and are essential to Minnesota National Guard’s 133rd Airlift Wing. This amendment ensures the Minnesota National Guard maintains its full fleet of C-130 aircraft. 

“C-130 aircraft are the backbone of Minnesota’s 133rd Airlift Wing,” said Klobuchar. “This commitment in the National Defense Authorization Act will enable us to maintain the full fleet of C-130s as they carry out missions essential to our national security.” 

“Our Air National Guard C-130 flying wings provide nearly half of the Air Force’s tactical airlift capability,” said Barrasso. “For more than 50 years, C-130’s have brought Americans into combat, provided humanitarian relief around the globe, and helped fight forest fires across the country. I am pleased to see our bipartisan amendment pass in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act. We will continue to make sure the Air Force maintains access to these critically important and versatile aircrafts.”

“The C-130 aircraft are critical to our national defense and to Minnesota’s 133rd Airlift Wing,” said Smith. “This amendment will secure the full fleet of these planes and ensure the Minnesota National Guard is equipped to carry out missions at home and abroad.”

“The Wyoming Air National Guard frequently uses C-130 aircraft to fight wildfires throughout the state. These planes play an integral role in ensuring Wyoming communities are protected from devastating fires,” said Lummis. “I’m proud the Senate passed the bipartisan amendment I introduced alongside Senator Klobuchar to prevent the Air Force from decreasing the number of C-130 aircraft assigned to the National Guard.”

Klobuchar and Smith have long worked to support the Minnesota National Guard and its air capabilities, including by supporting funding to maintain and upgrade the Air National Guard’s fleet of C-130 aircraft.

In last year’s NDAA, the Senators secured language that required the Air Force to operate at least 271 C-130 aircraft, ensuring the Minnesota National Guard did not lose any C-130 aircraft.