Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby provided the following readout:
Secretary Chuck Hagel placed a phone call today to members of the Council of Governors, who are meeting in Nashville, Tennessee.
The secretary updated the governors on his trip through the Southeast region, which highlights his focus on future force capabilities -- such as ballistic missile submarines, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and Army helicopter aviation.
Secretary Hagel reiterated his commitment to work with governors as they, too, face a tough fiscal environment and pledged to consult with them as the department begins to prepare the FY-16 budget submission. The secretary made clear his continued concerns about looming mandatory cuts under sequestration. He asked for the governors' support in making plain to Congress the damage to be done to national security should sequestration remain in effect.
He thanked them for their time and promised to keep them informed. The secretary suggested the idea of conducting more frequent and less formal discussions between those meetings already routinely scheduled.