The two main things I'd like to point out in the press release below are: 1) who signed (all of Virginia's Democratic U.S. Representatives and Senators, plus Republican Representatives Wittman, Rigell, Forbes and Wolf); and 2) who did NOT sign (Republican Representatives Robert Hurt, Bob Goodlatte, Eric Can'tor, and Morgan Griffith). That's right, Republicans Can'tor, Goodlatte, Griffith and Hurt put their far-right-wing ideology ahead of the wellbeing of Virginia's citizens to such a degree that they wouldn't even sign onto a letter urging "immediate action to avert the devastating impacts of sequestration" that will be " particularly devastating to Virginia." Apparently, they've got their priorities – allegiance to Grover Norquist, for instance – and it trumps their oath of office. I urge everyone to keep that in mind the next time these jerks are up for reelection.
WASHINGTON, DC – Members of Virginia’s Congressional Delegation today sent a letter to President Barack Obama, Speaker John Boehner, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid expressing their unity for immediate action to avert looming cuts set to hit March 1, stressing the disproportional impact to the Commonwealth of Virginia. The bicameral, bipartisan group of members also stressed the enormous impacts on the country’s national security and federal government, and the ripple effect on Virginia’s economy.
Virginia Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, and Representatives Rob Wittman (VA-1), Scott Rigell (VA-2), Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (VA-3), J. Randy Forbes (VA-4), Jim Moran (VA-8), Frank Wolf (VA-10), and Gerry Connolly (VA-11) wrote, in part:
“As a bipartisan delegation of Virginia lawmakers representing wide-ranging interests and viewpoints, we write to show unified support for immediate action to avert the devastating impacts of sequestration. The Commonwealth of Virginia, with its long history of contribution to our national defense and to the federal government, will bear a disproportionate amount of the pain imposed by these arbitrary cuts should they come to pass.”
Full text of the letter follows:
February 15, 2013
The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20500
The Honorable John Boehner
United States House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
The Honorable Harry Reid
United States Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510
Dear Mr. President, Mr. Speaker and Mr. Leader:
As a bipartisan delegation of Virginia lawmakers representing wide-ranging interests and viewpoints, we write to show unified support for immediate action to avert the devastating impacts of sequestration. The Commonwealth of Virginia, with its long history of contribution to our national defense and to the federal government, will bear a disproportionate amount of the pain imposed by these arbitrary cuts should they come to pass.
These reductions, while harmful to the entire U.S. economy, will be particularly devastating to Virginia. According to a study published by George Mason University, nearly ten percent of the 2.1 million jobs that would be lost as a result of sequestration will come from Virginia. Of these 207,571 Virginia jobs, 136,191 will be lost as a result of cuts to defense, 71,380 job losses will result from reductions in non-defense spending. Further, sequestration would result in a loss of $20.8 billion in gross state product. The consequences of a failure to avert sequestration will ripple through all parts of our state economy and could lead to a hollow military force and a government unable to adequately respond to the needs of its citizens.
We stand ready to work hand-in-hand to negotiate an agreement to avert these cuts that threaten grave consequences for the Commonwealth, our federal government, and our national security.
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