The Lewis and Clark class of dry cargo/ammunition ships are named for explorers and pioneers, such as Richard E. Byrd, Amelia Earhart, or the namesakes of the class. On Mr. Mabus‘ watch, the namings have taken a decidedly political turn. In 2009, the Navy announced the naming of the USNS Medgar Evars after the civil-rights leader. Sen. Barbara Boxer, California Democrat, defended the practice as part of the Navy’s “rich tradition,” but naming ships after political activists began with the Obama administration.
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