Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the Congressional Modeling & Simulation (M&S) Caucus, announced today that the Caucus, in conjunction with the National Training and Simulation Association, will join in hosting the Tenth Annual M&S Exhibition on Capitol Hill. As the premier M&S event in the nation’s capital,the expo draws exhibitors from diverse industries to showcase M&S applications to lawmakers in an effort to promote the development of these high-tech tools in a growing number of fields and specialties.
Today, the Supreme Court issued a 5 to 4 decision, authored by Justice Kennedy, holding that the Due Process and Establishment Clauses of the 14th Amendment of the Constitution require all 50 states to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. This ruling overturns democratically-elected laws in dozens of states. In response to the Court’s decision, Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA04), issued the following statement:
Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in the case of King vs. Burwell today:
“Today’s decision doesn’t change how dysfunctional and destabilizing Obamacare has been to our country’s healthcare system. Moving forward, it is crucial that Congress reframes the conversation over the federal government’s proper role in healthcare. Americans don’t need bureaucrats with “government knows best” attitudes micromanaging their healthcare. They need their government working to facilitate collaboration between patients, businesses, insurers, and providers so every citizen is empowered with a variety of affordable free market options to fit their unique needs. We owe it to this country and to our children to get America’s healthcare system back on a path that puts every patient above politics.”
In a 6-3 ruling, the Supreme Court upheld the decision of the Fourth Circuit Court in the case of King v. Burwell, on the subsidies for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Court ruled that the Affordable Care Act, as written, allows for subsidies to be provided to individuals enrolled in coverage in states offering insurance through a federally facilitated health exchange.
Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee and Co-Chairman of the Congressional China Caucus, will discuss U.S. security policy in the Asia-Pacific region at the American Enterprise Institute on Thursday, June 25, 2015 at 12:00 PM. The event will be moderated by former Senator and AEI Senior Fellow Jim Talent.
“China’s recent behavior in the Asia-Pacific is unacceptable, illegitimate and deeply destabilizing to the peaceful regional order,” Congressman Forbes said. “U.S. strategy in the region must comprehensively address Beijing’s steady effort to upend the military balance, restrict freedom of the seas, and resolve territorial disputes through threats and coercion. More than rhetoric will be required to maintain the peace and prosperity of the world’s most dynamic region.”
WHAT: American Enterprise Institute event, “The Pivot to Asia: Rhetoric Isn’t Enough.”
WHO: Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee and Co-Chairman of the Congressional China Caucus; Former U.S. Senator Jim Talent, AEI Senior Fellow and Director, National Security 2020 Project, Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies.
WHEN: Thursday, June 25, 2015 at 12:00 PM.
WHERE: American Enterprise Institute, 12th Floor, 1150 17th St., NW, Washington, DC 20036.
Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, will deliver remarks at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment’s (CSBA) event “Sustaining America’s Precision Strike Advantage” on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 at 9:00 AM.
“Anti-access systems threaten to change the equation that has governed U.S. military strategy for over a generation,” Congressman Forbes said. “Although the focus is often on platforms, our weapons systems and munitions portfolios must also evolve and adapt to this challenge. Advanced platforms are only as good as the precision munitions they deliver. CSBA’s report should jump-start a new and more sophisticated dialogue about how the United States can sustain its precision strike advantage and a stable military balance in a maturing precision strike regime.”
WHAT: Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment’s (CSBA) event entitled, “Sustaining America’s Precision Strike Advantage.”
WHO: Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee.
WHEN: Wednesday, June 24, 2015 at 9:00 AM.
WHERE: SR 236, Russell Senate Office Building, 2 Constitute Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20002
Last week, the House voted on a number of trade bills. Because of the different procedural votes, many people watching found it confusing to follow what was happening on the House floor on Friday. I’ve been able to hear from many of you via direct conversations, phone calls, and emails, and -- while 68% of those who took my weekly poll said they support of TPA to expand free trade -- I know some still have questions and concerns.
That’s why I’ve put together this brief guide answering some of the most common questions I’ve heard, and
What did the House vote on last Friday? The House of Representatives voted separately on two prongs of a trade package titled the Trade Act of 2015 – here’s the breakdown on both in the order they were voted on:
That’s why it was important that the House passed TPA (Trade Promotion Authority) – which it did, with my support -- to put Congress in the driver’s seat, and to mandate that the final text of any free trade agreement be made public and posted online for 60 days before the agreement can go into effect. TPA is supported by many prominent conservatives as well as businesses in the Fourth District (as discussed below).
Did the trade package ultimately pass? No – because TAA failed, the Trade Act of 2015 (which included TPA) was not sent to the President for his signature.
So was there a vote on an actual trade agreement on Friday? No – the House only voted on TAA and TPA. The free trade agreement you have been hearing about is called TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership). A vote on TPP itself is at least 4-5 months away and can ONLY happen after the requirements of TPA have been met. One of these requirements is that, for the first time, the full text of the final trade agreement must be made public and posted online for 60 days. Only then does the agreement go to Congress for debate and a final vote. See below:
(TPA Bill Text)
Do conservatives support TPA? Free trade is a core tenant of conservative values and many prominent conservative individuals and organizations have been outspoken in their support of trade promotion authority, including (click below to read their comments):
Even President Ronald Reagan himself was a staunch advocate of free trade, saying, “The freer the flow of world trade, the stronger the tides for human progress and peace among nations.”
Ok, but I’m concerned that Congress is giving up too much power to the President. Does that concern you? I have been an outspoken opponent of the Administration’s unconstitutional, unilateral actions on issues regarding immigration, healthcare, and many others. That is why a key part of TPA is that Congress retains its ability to vote to reject any free trade agreement, and that the House of Representatives has the power to “switch-off” TPA at any time if the President doesn’t follow the law or congressional intent. The current TPA agreement maintains strict oversight abilities and makes sure Congress has the final say, not the President. Read more.
(For an explanation of the top myths about TPA, you can read more here from The Federalist.)
…then why are these trade agreements being negotiated in secret? Here’s how it works under TPA:
Now, imagine if we had TPA-level transparency for the Iran nuclear deal that the President is presently negotiating...
Where do employers in Virginia’s Fourth District stand on TPA? Throughout this debate, I’ve heard from a number of small businesses, employees, organizations, and stakeholders across the Fourth District and the Commonwealth who support the passage of TPA. Here are just a few:
Already, trade supports 1.1 million jobs in Virginia, and the majority of the U.S. companies that export goods are small or medium-sized businesses. With roughly three-quarters of world purchasing power and almost 95% of world consumers outside America's borders, ensuring access to these growing markets is essential to strengthening and diversifying Virginia's business climate and ensuring future economic growth.
…but isn’t this just exporting jobs overseas? When the U.S. competes on a level playing field, our businesses and workers win. Business owners, manufacturers, and entrepreneurs across the country agree new trade agreements would mean better, higher-paying jobs for American workers and more American-made products abroad. In fact, just recently, the National Association of Manufacturers released a statement calling for the immediate passage of TPA to, “expand opportunities for manufacturers to sell our products overseas, increase global competitiveness and fuel our ability to grow and create jobs, or vote to keep manufacturers on the sidelines and at a global disadvantage.”
I’ve heard people tie TPA to China. How are the two connected? The simple fact is, if we don’t engage in writing the rules of the global economy, China will.
At the end of the day, we must ask ourselves: who is going to write the rules for the global economy — America or China?
Does TPA/TPP impact immigration at all? No it does not. However some have asserted that TPA could be used as a vehicle for the Administration to allow free migration of labor and override national immigration restrictions. In response to these concerns, I supported the addition of an amendment to the annual funding bill for the U.S. Trade Representative, explicitly prohibiting the Administration from negotiating changes to existing immigration laws. You can read the full text of the amendment, here.
Will TPA give away Congressional or Constitutional authority to international committees or commissions? No, TPA does not cede American sovereignty over any aspect of our nation’s laws, regulations, or Constituent. In fact, TPA includes language that reaffirms that Congress—and only Congress—can change U.S. law, and no agreements can take effect without congressional approval. Read more.
Free trade is not only crucial to our economy in the Commonwealth, but also to our future as a country. If we don’t secure new trade agreements, we are falling behind and ceding our leadership to nations that don’t share our commitment to free enterprise and the rule of law. That’s why it was crucial Congress acted to ensure the United States plays a leadership role in writing the rules of the global economy, and in enforcing a strong rules-based trading system so our American companies, farmers, manufactures, and workers can compete internationally and create jobs here at home.
P.S. Read what Virginia employers are saying about TPA, in their own words, here.Read More
2135 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Placed prominently on the wall of Congressman Randy Forbes’ Washington office is a framed copy of the Declaration of Independence surrounded by portraits of the fifty-six founding fathers who signed the document asserting our nation’s freedom. Frequently when Randy is in our nation’s capital, he can be found personally escorting constituents through his office to tell the story of how this powerful document and its signatories serve as reminder of the sacrifices that were made during birth of our nation and the weight of responsibility on elected officials to preserve the freedom for which so many have fought and died.
Since his constituents elected him to Congress in 2001, one of Randy’s key priorities has been to protect and defend our nation. As Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, Randy is responsible for the research, development, acquisition, and sustainment of Navy and Marine Corps programs as well as the Air Force’s bomber and tanker fleets. Randy’s position is central in developing the nation’s long-term strategies to meet our future security needs. As a result of his work on behalf of our military, in 2009, Randy became one of only a few individuals to have been honored with the highest civilian award offered by both the United States Army and the United States Navy.
In a time of broken government and stale ideas, Randy has focused on legislative solutions that have proven to be refreshing alternative to the status quo. His much-hailed New Manhattan Project for Energy led the Wall Street Journal to ask: “Why is Randy Forbes all alone? … The surprising thing is that there aren’t 100 Randy Forbes out there, issuing similar calls to arms to seize this moment and finally cure the country’s oil addiction.” The Virginian Pilot, similarly, commented: “Outrage won’t solve the nation’s energy troubles, or safeguard jobs. For that, you need something else, something Forbes is displaying: Leadership.”
Randy has rejected Washington political rhetoric and has instead focused on solutions-based leadership to tackle issues such as economic recovery, health care, tax reform and government spending. In health care, Randy has introduced proposals to protect seniors and individuals with preexisting conditions from health insurance cancellation, to harness the potential in ethical stem-cell research, and to double the investment the federal government is making in research to cure diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. His work has earned him the award, “Guardian of Seniors’ Rights.” In addition, Randy has introduced legislation to improve efficiency in government agencies, and he has been named a “Hero of Taxpayers”. Instead of abandoning sound fiscal policy in the face of economic challenge, Randy was one of only 17 Members of Congress to vote against each stimulus and bailout package under both the Bush and Obama Administrations.
Randy founded and chairs the Congressional Prayer Caucus and has led this group of bipartisan Members in national efforts to protect prayer and our nation’s spiritual history. He is known as a skilled orator on the Judiciary Committee and, as the former Ranking Member of the Crime Subcommittee, Randy is often called upon to lead the debate on national issues such as gang crime or immigration reform. As founder and chairman of the Congressional China Caucus, Randy has introduced legislation to combat Chinese espionage and is frequently tapped as a national commentator on Sino-American relations. Groups as diverse as the US Chamber of Commerce, the NAACP, the National Taxpayers Union, and the American Farm Bureau Federation have all recognized the work Randy has done in Congress – a testament to Randy’s independent problem-solving and focus on bipartisan solutions.
While Randy’s legislative proposals have received significant national and local attention, Randy’s commitment to improving quality of life for his constituents has been the hallmark of his career in Congress. Randy places a high-priority on partnering with community leaders and elected officials of all political persuasions to bring about greater economic prosperity, increased educational opportunities, safer communities, and improved local transportation and infrastructure for the Fourth District. His work to position Fort Lee through the last BRAC round led to the arrival of nearly 12,000 jobs in the Chesterfield/Tri-Cities area and his work as founder and chairman of the Congressional Modeling & Simulation Caucus has elevated Hampton Roads as a premier destination for high-paying tech jobs.
Working in Washington has not changed Randy’s enthusiasm for serving those that elected him. Richmond Times Dispatch noted Randy has “earned a reputation for constituent service” for his ability to cut through red tape and for his unparalleled constituent communications. Randy publishes a weekly email newsletter with over 85,000 subscribers that includes commentary and as well as factual information on the issues before Congress.
Randy has long worked under the belief that transparency is a key condition of good government. In addition to his unparalleled work to inform and solicit input from his constituents, Randy was one of the first members of Congress to publish appropriations requests to his website, causing the Richmond Times Dispatch to call him, “an admirable example for openness.” His website was selected by the Congressional Management Foundation as one of the best websites in Congress and was specifically commended for offering constituents a “clear understanding of his work in Congress”.
A life-long resident of Virginia, Randy began his career in private law practice helping small and medium-sized businesses and ultimately became a partner in the largest law firm in southeastern Virginia. From 1989-2001, he served the Commonwealth of Virginia in the General Assembly. As a member of the House of Delegates, he served 7 years, quickly establishing himself and serving as the Floor Leader until his election to the State Senate in 1997. One year later, he became the Senate Floor Leader. He served in the State Senate for 3 1/2 years, until his election to the U.S. House of Representatives.
Randy graduated from Great Bridge High School in Chesapeake in 1970. He was valedictorian of his 1974 class at Randolph-Macon College. In 1977, Randy graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law.
Randy attends Great Bridge Baptist Church, where he has taught adult Sunday school for over 20 years. He was born and raised in Chesapeake, Virginia where he still resides with his wife Shirley. He and Shirley have been married since 1978 and have four children: Neil, Jamie, Jordan, and Justin.
Retweeted by randy_forbes
“Freedom prospers when religion is vibrant & the rule of law under God is acknowledged.” –President Ronald Reagan #FaithItForward
Retweeted by randy_forbes
Retweeted by randy_forbes
Retweeted by randy_forbes
This Fourth of July, let us enjoy the celebrations, but let us too remember where we’ve been, for it will guide us forward. Let us teach
Meet Madison Hodge of Chesterfield, our 2015 4th District’s Congressional Art Competition winner. Madison just graduated from Clover Hill High
Reports of an active shooter at Washington Navy Yard -- praying for everyone's safety as we learn more.
Congratulations to those elected this week to serve as officers and leaders of the American Maritime Modernization Association and thank you
Some personal reflections on #Charleston today, as our nation grieves the loss of Rev. Clementa Pinckney and the eight other victims . . . .