Joining J.R. this week is Rep. Rob Wittman – representing Virginia’s First Congressional District and serving as the ranking member of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Force Projection.
On this podcast, Congressman Wittman appropriately addresses the concerns conservatives have with declaring a national emergency to build the border wall, as well as not passing appropriations bills on-time. That said, Rep. Wittman believes while the president will be challenged on the legality of his declaration, President Trump’s action certainly makes sense given the nature of the threat to our national security and the inaction of Congress to address the issue. Regardless, another shutdown has been averted. Rep. Wittman was clear that hardworking civil servants deserve better than to be dangled as collateral for every political disagreement, and that Congress needs to govern regarding the “power of the purse” – and not go to brinksmanship.
We also discuss shipbuilding. Huntington Ingalls Industries made record profits in the last quarter of 2017, yet there was a multitude of issues with the last, yet first in class, building project, CVN-79, the USS GERALD FORD. Although there are concerns, Wittman was clear that the recent two carrier block-buy for CVN-80 and 81 would yield a net cost-savings – $4 billion – and will serve to stabilize the shipbuilding industry in the long term, as well as advance seapower supremacy against our peer competitors.
Finally, we address Virginia’s turmoil with Gov. Ralph Northam, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, and Atty. Gen. Mark Herring. Wittman, who is regularly mentioned in political circles for statewide office, is clear that due process is the best way to address the current scandal. That said, Wittman also made clear his thoughts on the role of an elected official regarding race relations.
(header photo by Mark Winterstein. See more of his photos at his Instagram page.)