President Barack Obama's federal budget proposal, submitted Thursday, advances his promise to end production of the Pratt & Whitney-powered F-22 fighter jet and sets up a showdown with congressional representatives from Connecticut and other states with a stake in the plane's production.
Obama said the F-22 is too expensive and already outdated for emerging military needs.
Still, the budget includes billions of dollars for projects that benefit Connecticut defense industry companies, including:
• $4.6 billion for submarines built or designed at Electric Boat in Groton
• $10.4 billion for F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, for which Pratt makes the primary engine
• $3 billion for helicopters from Sikorsky Aircraft
• $440 million for research and development of a flying fuel tanker, potentially a Pratt project.
While the budget would cancel a $15 billion search-and-rescue helicopter program sought by Stratford-based Sikorsky, it would also terminate a program to build a new U.S. presidential helicopter already won by a Sikorsky rival.
Congress ultimately approves the budget and now has the opportunity to revise it, a process that usually stretches into the fall.