Mike Garcia is a highly decorated U.S. Naval Officer who spent 20 years in the Navy fighting for freedom. He flew over 30 combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom over Baghdad, Fallujah, and Tikrit. His record-setting performance flying earned him the honor of becoming one of the first F/A-18E Super Hornet strike fighter pilots in the Navy. Garcia knows firsthand the important role that the United States plays around the world as a force for good, but that the first priority must always be national security and protecting the homeland, to include securing and better surveillance of our borders. Mike Garcia will make it a priority to ensure our men and women in uniform have the funding and tools necessary to keep America safe, and only send them into battle when it is absolutely necessary and when there is a clear strategic objective with understood exit criteria. Garcia knows we need to recapitalize our equipment, ensure readiness levels recover after 20 years of combat and incentivize service members to stay in the military with higher pay and stronger benefits. Upon separation from the military we must ensure a seamless transition back to the “real” world for our Veterans.