Mobile Menu - OpenMobile Menu - Closed

Remarks at USS Minnesota Commissioning in Norfolk, VA

September 7, 2013

Good morning.

Mrs. Roughead, Secretary Mabus, Admiral Greenert, distinguished guests, and the entire crew of the USS Minnesota.

It is an honor and a pleasure to be with you on this special day.  Today’s commissioning is a tribute to the bravery of our veterans as well as the proud service all those in the Navy & all branches of our military.

I want extend my gratitude to the men and women who planned, designed, and built this vessel, which is truly a technological marvel.  We are all deeply proud of your workmanship and commitment on behalf of the American people.  I know Minnesotans will share tremendous pride in the USS Minnesota as it becomes the newest vessel in the most powerful naval fleet the world has ever known.

Allow me to give a special thank you to Mrs. Roughead for her leadership in sponsoring this ship.  Like Mrs. Roughead and all Minnesotans, we love our state – with its 10,000 lakes and our beautiful forests and farm fields.

As the men and women who operate this vessel go to sea, we are acutely aware that it is much more than a symbol of technological wonder.  It epitomizes our country’s global leadership and sea power superiority in the 21st Century.

The United States Navy is agile, flexible, and responsive -- traits most recently demonstrated by moving ships to the Middle East on short notice.

In the coming decades, the thousands of brave men and women who will serve on the USS Minnesota will have an unbreakable bond to the great state that I represent.  On behalf of Minnesota, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude and prayers to the officers and crew who will sail this remarkable submarine.

May God Bless all of you and may God bless our beloved Nation and its people.