MR. MORRELL: Hello, all. Good afternoon. A few quick announcements, and then we'll get to questions.
This morning, Secretary Gates was pleased to pay tribute to General McKiernan during his retirement ceremony at Fort Myer. He thanked the general for his 37 years of distinguished service to the United States Army and wished him and his family the best of luck in their future endeavors.
Tomorrow morning, the secretary travels to Fort Drum, New York, the home of the 10th Mountain Division, which I believe is still the Army's most-deployed unit. There, he will meet with recently deployed brigade commanders and command sergeants major, as well as separately with spouses to discuss the stresses and strains of frequent and lengthy deployments. He will also conduct a town hall-style meeting with hundreds of soldiers on base.
Later that afternoon, the secretary will travel to President Obama's home town to address the Economic Club of Chicago. In a speech to hundreds of executives, including many from the defense industry, he will continue to press for fundamentally reshaping the Pentagon budget and reforming the way the military does business.
As Congress debates the FY '10 budget here in Washington, the secretary will take his case to the nation that we must not just change the way -- the way -- the weapons we buy, but how we buy them to ensure that we win the wars we are waging, prepare for the wars of tomorrow and -- rather than continue to rearm for previous ones. Secretary Gates will argue that when it comes to defense spending and weapons buying, from missile defense to the F-22, business as usual simply will not do.
On Friday, the secretary will travel just north of Chicago, to Naval Station Great Lakes, where 50,000 recruits receive their basic training every year. He will observe some of that training, meet with instructors, and address the 971 freshly minted sailors who are graduating this week.
He arrives back in Washington later that afternoon, in some to bid farewell to Army Secretary Pete Geren, who is leaving his post after two years of exemplary service to the nation.
And with that, I'll take your questions.
Lita, welcome back. Do you have anything on your mind today?
Q Well, let me throw sort of a budget question your way. It looks like the Senate has postponed debate on the F-22. It appears to be making more time for some it appears to be negotiating and wrangling over this.
Is the secretary making any either additional calls or just having any additional discussions with members of the Senate on this? And any comment, I guess, on the postponement?