A Republican candidate for the Utah Senate seat, Mike Lee, announced Wednesday that if elected, he would likely vote to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, The Salt Lake Tribune reported yesterday.
"I don't think we need [nuclear testing] and I think, on the whole, we as Americans would be safer if the treaty were in place," Lee said.
Lee also cited the "supreme national interest" clause, which allows the United States to withdraw from the treaty in the very rare case that it decides nuclear testing is necessary, as a key element of his support. "I don't think we currently have any need for detonation testing. I think there's a possibility that need could arise in the future and I don't want to take that possibility off the table should it become necessary," he remarked.
Lee and his opponent for the Republican nomination, Tim Bridgewater, sparked a state-wide backlash last week when the two candidates suggested that they would support underground nuclear testing in the future. A Salt Lake Tribune editorial expressed the reaction from many in the state. Click here for more information on the recent developments in Utah.
Bridgewater, has yet to make a stance on the CTBT, and Democratic candidate for the Senate seat Sam Granato released a statement against nuclear testing last week.