Washington, DC – House Armed Services Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA) and Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX) issued the following statement on the passing of Mel Laird, Secretary of Defense during the Nixon administration:

We were saddened to hear about the passing of Mel Laird. As Secretary of Defense, he led America’s military through a difficult and dangerous time in our history. Our country is better for his service both at the Pentagon and in Congress.”