McCain, who will chair the Senate Armed Services Committee, outlined priorities.
Exercise runs from Tuesday through Friday.
But it also allows Air Force to reduce the Warthog's flying hours.
Plan to boost training flights raises concerns over noisier planes.
Salute to D-M to raise money to protect the base.
Budget bill, if it survives, would save the "Warthog."
The U.S. House on Thursday overwhelmingly adopted an amendment to the 2015 defense appropriation bill that would prohibit the Pentagon from spending any money to retire the A-10 Thunderbolt II jet — a mainstay of Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.
Amendment would block plane's retirement.
Backers of the A-10 close air-support jet say they’ll keep battling to block a Pentagon plan to retire the plane, after suffering a setback by House budget writers.
The House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee in draft legislation failed to include funding for the Air Force’s fleet of A-10 Thunderbolt II attack jets, despite the full House’s earlier authorization to fund the A-10 fleet.
Davis-Monthan Air Force Base reported an estimated local economic impact of $973 million in the 2013 fiscal year, down from about $1.14 billion in the prior year as Pentagon budget cuts took their toll.
To Tom Norris, a former Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II combat pilot, the Pentagon’s plan to retire the “Warthog” in the next few years is like a coach benching a team’s best player.
Phasing out the A-10 attack aircraft could cost Tucson 2,000 jobs — and that’s just one of many changes in store for Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, the proposed 2015 Air Force budget shows.