Congressman Randy Forbes was the only member of congress from Hampton Roads to vote against the budget agreement that reopened the government. Now he’s in the hot seat, but he’s not apologizing for his “no” vote.
It was a friendly and receptive audience that greeted Congressman Randy Forbes, at a local Navy League luncheon Friday afternoon. But after voting against legislation to end the government shutdown and extend the nations credit limit, Forbes has a target on his back.
"We live in a world of bullies, I mean just simply bullies,” Forbes told WAVY.com. “And if you don't agree with them and you don't vote the way they want, it's not a matter of ‘let me intellectually agree with you,’ it's ’Oh they're terrible. They're selling out the country … ‘”
An editorial published by the Virginian Pilot Friday said that Forbes and the other lawmakers who voted against the measure -- some in the senate as well as the house, but all republicans – “demonstrated they are unfit for public office that demands perspective and the ability to compromise for the greater good."
"The last time we had one of these compromises it was called sequestration. I voted against that because of our military because of what I said it would do to our civilian employees. I was right then,” Forbes said.
Senator Mark Warner hopes reopening the government will open the way for a bigger deal to remove what he calls the "debt and fiscal overhang" confronting the nation.
"Nothing would do more to restore the public's trust,” Warner said. “Nothing would do more to create jobs. Nothing would do more to restore America's economic strength in the whole world..."
But Congressman Forbes asks where the Department of Defense is in that plan. He said the budget measure approved Tuesday night does "nothing to change the course of sequestration," and that is why he voted “no.”
"They had an opportunity to fix this so that we wouldn't see that in 2014, but unless it gets fixed, we're going to see those same kinds of furloughs, those same kinds of job layoffs again that we're going to revisit by just kicking the can down the road … “ Forbes said.
Forbes is pushing to have the defense chiefs brief the entire congress and not just the Armed Services Committees or finance committees, so that they will understand how crucial a strong Department of Defense is to both national security and the global economy.
Camden County Sheriff Tony Perry said that during the last two weeks, incidents of breaking and entering and home or vehicle larceny have increased in two areas of the county.
A Facebook post helped Elizabeth City Police identify and locate the suspect of a hit-and-run incident involving a 3-year-old this week.
As Newport News Fire Chief Scott Liebold plans to retire at the end of this month, the city is looking for his replacement -- and they want your help.