MILITARY

Senator says fighter program has been scandal and tragedy

The chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee says the record and performance of the most expensive weapons program in U.S. military history has been a scandal and a tragedy.

Senator John McCain of Arizona delivered a withering critique of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter at a committee hearing Tuesday.

The Pentagon plans to spend close to $400 billion to buy nearly 2,500 F-35s for the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps. The budget request for fiscal year 2017 includes $8.3 billion to buy 63 aircraft.

McCain says the aircraft's development schedule has stretched to 15 years, deliveries of the F-35 have been delayed, and costs have skyrocketed.

McCain also says he's disturbed that it costs $70 million annually to run the office that oversees the F-35 program.