Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin met last week with Colorado Democratic Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper about the Pentagon’s decision to move Space Command from Colorado to Alabama.

“We met with Secretary Austin today and agreed with DOD that politics should have no role in the Space Command basing decision process,” Bennet and Hickenlooper said in a joint statement. “In the face of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and China’s saber rattling in the Pacific, national security cannot just be one of many criteria. It has to be the central priority. We expressed these concerns to Secretary Austin today and reiterated that in the best interest of our national security, Space Command must remain in Colorado.”

A DOD official confirmed to Space News that the department “is engaging” with Colorado lawmakers but didn’t provide details.

The meeting happened days after Bennet voted against a DOD nominee and said he would hold up more unless the meeting took place, as On Base reported.

Colorado officials allege that the Trump administration selected Alabama for political reasons. Reviews by the Government Accountability Office and the DOD Inspector General’s office found nothing improper about the basing selection process.

Space Force photo of Hickenlooper by Staff Sergeant Jose A. Rodriguez Jr