U.S. Rep. Walter Jones hopes he's able to garner enough support in the Senate this summer to pass a bill giving the Marine Corps the recognition he thinks the branch deserves.
Jones, a North Carolina Republican whose district includes Camp Lejeune and Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, has introduced legislation in every congressional session since 2001 to rename the Department of the Navy with little success. This year, the bill finally broke through.
John Stump, a Lady's Island resident and former Marine major, said he supported Jones' efforts.
"We have been a fighting force longer than the country has been around," Stump said. "We're a part of the Navy, we'll always be a part of the Navy ... but this is about getting a little recognition."
Termed "The Marine Corps Identity Bill," Jones' legislation to redesignate the Department of the Navy as the Department of the Navy and Marine Corps received more co-sponsors than any piece of legislation in the history of the House, Jones' office said. It was passed by a voice vote in the chamber Tuesday.
"My colleagues have shown the Marines that they are appreciated and deserve to be properly recognized," Jones said in a statement. "The Navy and the Marine Corps have always been one fighting team. Nothing is going to change that, but the Marines that have fought and lost their lives for this nation deserved to be officially recognized by the country."