J. Randy Forbes

J. Randy Forbes


Forbes Announces 10th Annual Modeling & Simulation Expo on Capitol Hill


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.

“Critical to both expanding America’s economy and enhancing national security, modeling and simulation technology continues to push our country forward,” said Forbes. “The important role that M&S plays as a catalyst for growth in the United States’ innovation economy will only grow in the years to come.”

WHAT: Tenth Annual Modeling & Simulation Exhibition

WHEN: Thursday, July 9, 2015, 10:30 AM to 2:00 PM;
Congressional Commentary is from 11:30-12:30 PM

: Rayburn Foyer, Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC.

Demonstrations at the Expo will allow participants to control city-wide emergency responses during a natural disaster, perform virtual surgery using state of the art robotics, and other innovative uses of simulation technology. Read More

Reflections on Charleston


Last week, a group met to study the Bible and everything changed.

Nine lives were cut short at the hand of a senseless murderer. Families were left to grieve the loss of their loved ones. A community was left to pick up the brokenness. A nation is left wondering how we will heal. How we will overcome?

We felt a particular betrayal because the people of the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church welcomed in the shooter, Dylann Roof, as he sat with them for up to an hour. They extended love and acceptance. How many of us have been in that similar place? Attending a Bible study, gathering with others on a Wednesday night at church, uniting our hearts and minds in prayer.

Last Friday – just two days after the shooting – many of the people of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church welcomed Dylann Roof in again, this time into forgiveness. The families of the victims were given the opportunity to address the shooter during his bond hearing. As a number of the relatives looked him in the eye through a television screen, they ushered him into grace. They invited him into love. They showed forgiveness in the face of incredible pain and loss.

The pain cannot be erased. The tragedy cannot be undone. The lives taken cannot be returned. The just anger and horror over the heinous crimes of Dylann Roof cannot – and should not -- diminish. But what we saw in that courtroom was the very moment when faith becomes more than words. One by one, family members spoke, their voices breaking as they were overcome with grief. “Although my grandfather and the other victims died at the hands of hate, everyone’s plea for your soul is proof that they lived in love, and their legacies will live in love,” said Alana Simmons, granddaughter of one of the victims.

In that instant, we witnessed a miracle. The miraculous nature of their responses in love and faith speaks louder and stronger than the evil committed against those innocent lives ever could.  The vicious hatred and violence of the shooter sought to divide. But the community in Charleston is coming together– black and white, Republican and Democrat – uniting in faith, forgiveness, and love.

Forgiveness of that magnitude takes courage –the kind of courage upon which a nation survives. There are thousands who seek to destroy our country and, as a result, we bear heartache as a nation. We feel it when bombs murder and maim innocent crowds on our city streets, when towers fall, when school children’s lives are cut tragically short. The situations are different, but the pain of searing loss is the same. We bear that heartache as a nation.

We live with the scars of those tragedies. In times of need, it is powerful to see how America rallies together, regardless of political affiliations, religious beliefs, socioeconomic levels, or race. It’s one of the most incredible things about this country we call home. It’s what makes us great. Evil seeks to divide, but time and again, our response unites us. There is no source of strength greater than that of our communities, our faith, our people, our prayers, and the bond that forms when we stand shoulder to shoulder, refusing to let tragedy triumph or divide us. Even when evil tries to tear directly at those very fibers in our nation’s tapestry, together, we unite and we grow stronger.  We are ‘Boston Strong;’ we are ‘Oklahoma City Strong;’ we are ‘New York City Strong;’ we are ‘Charleston Strong.’ We are America strong.

Alana Simmons was right about the members of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Their legacies will live in love. Let us grab hold of their faith – one that is grounded in love and compassion – and replicate it across our country and in our communities. America will continue to face challenging times ahead, but we need not look to the future with fear. Because when we unite, we prevail. Read More

Forbes Statement on Supreme Court Marriage Ruling


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:

“It is not the Court’s job to redefine sound public policy that has been democratically enacted by millions of Americans – just as the government should never force people to choose between their faith and their livelihood. Every American should be free to affirm the truth about marriage without being punished by the government.”

The majority opinion acknowledged that traditional marriage is a view that, “has long been held—and continues to be held—in good faith by reasonable and sincere people here and throughout the world…The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered.”

However, the dissenting Justices took issue with what they saw as a weak and narrow understating of the First Amendment.Justice Thomas stated, “[The majority] makes only a weak gesture toward religious liberty in a single paragraph.And even that gesture indicates a misunderstanding of religious liberty in our Nation’s tradition.Religious liberty is about more than just the protection for “religious organizations and persons… as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths.” Religious liberty is about the freedom of action in matters of religion generally, and the scope of that liberty is directly correlates to the civil restraints places upon religious practice.”

Chief Justice Roberts further highlighted the Court’s improper imposition into the democratic process.“[T]his Court is not a legislature. Whether same-sex marriage is a good idea should be of no concern to us… The majority’s decision is an act of will, not legal judgment.”

Read More

Forbes Reacts to Supreme Court’s King vs. Burwell Ruling


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.             

Read More

Tomorrow: Forbes to Discuss U.S. Security in Asia-Pacific at AEI


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.”

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.  

Read More

Forbes Announces New Congressional Prayer Caucus Initiative, #FaithitForward


Congressman Randy Forbes, Founder and Co-Chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, announced a new initiative today, Tuesday, June 23rd. 

The purpose of the initiative, called #FaithitForward, is to unite the country around celebrating the positive impact of faith in local communities. Members of Congress across the nation are participating by highlighting inspiring stores of how people of faith in their districts are a force for good in their communities.

“Policies are often generated because of real life stories of how those policies impact the lives and direction of a nation,” said Congressman Forbes. “Perhaps no group of stories have had a greater impact on our country than stories of faith. Unfortunately, amidst policy debates, we sometimes lose sight of those stories. The goal of #FaithitForward is to tell these stories in a central place for policymakers and the world to see.”

To learn more about #FaithitForward, or to submit a story to be featured, visit https://www.facebook.com/FaithitForward.
Read More

Tomorrow: Forbes to Speak on Precision Strike at CSBA


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

Read More

The Cost of Human Trafficking


Globally, the average cost of a trafficked person is $90, according to some estimates.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security estimates human trafficking generates $32 billion in illegal profits per year around the globe, second only to drug trafficking.

According to the Congressional Research Service, approximately 17,000 people may be trafficked into the United States every year, and roughly 100,000 U.S. citizens may be victims of trafficking within the United States.

The average age a child is trafficked into the commercial sex trade industry is between 11 and 14 years old.

Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world. It fuels organized crime. It distorts markets. It endangers public health. It facilitates the movement of immigrants across borders.  And it does all of this at the expense of something far more valuable than any money or power it produces – human life.

Human trafficking is a crime that takes many forms, so it can be difficult to quantify or track. Women and children are forced into prostitution, young boys are forced to be soldiers, and migrant workers are exploited and abused.  Victims are “hidden” and so much is still unknown about the crime.

For all its elusiveness, one thing is crystal clear: Human trafficking is a crime that debases humanity. It’s a human issue – one that our entire nation should be concerned with.

As it stands, our federal government has a zero tolerance policy on human trafficking. This means government employees and contractors cannot engage in any form with this criminal behavior, and that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure taxpayer dollars never contribute to human trafficking.  Even still, until we can end human trafficking for good, there are ways we can strengthen our zero tolerance policy as we fight against this injustice.

One way is to equip our foreign service officers serving abroad to better recognize incidents of human trafficking.  Many of our U.S. officers overseas interact on the front lines with victims of trafficking (often through visa requests), yet the officers undergo very little training to recognize signs of human trafficking. An Inspector General report assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the U.S. State Department recommended that U.S. embassy employees receive human trafficking prevention training.

Earlier this year, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill to achieve just that. The Human Trafficking Prevention Act, H.R. 357, authorizes the creation of a training program for Foreign Service Officers working overseas at U.S. Embassies to stem the demand for trafficking and spot victims before they are trafficked into the United States. The legislation also requires briefings within the United States before officers depart for their posts overseas. In addition, the State Department would be required to send an annual reminder to embassies and consulates around the world on human trafficking threats.

Ending human trafficking will require a multi-pronged effort, one that includes building public education and awareness, protecting victims, bringing traffickers to justice, and cutting trafficking at the source. H.R. 357 is just one example which aims at the latter – cutting human trafficking off at its source by giving our frontline public servants the tools they need to spot potential victims and take action.  As a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee – the Congressional Committee with direct jurisdiction over trafficking related issues – I was a part of the recent successful approval of four bills to combat human trafficking in the U.S., including The Human Trafficking Prevention, Intervention, and Recovery Act (H.R. 350), The Stop Exploitation Through Trafficking Act (H.R. 159), The Stop Advertising Victims of Exploitation (SAVE) Act (H.R. 285), and The Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (H.R. 181). The eradication of human trafficking is an area where Democrats and Republicans are finding common ground. I am encouraged by the Committee’s efforts in the 114th Congress so far, and will continue to work to ensure Congress and the American people are partnering to do more to put an end to this abhorrent business and protect our precious children.

Human trafficking is an affront to human dignity and it has to stop. If our nation stands for freedom, then we have a responsibility to act boldly, with courage and firm resolve to fight this injustice and end human trafficking once and for all.  Read More

Wednesday: Forbes to Chair Seapower Hearing on Large Surface Combatants


Washington, D.C. – Congressman J. Randy Forbes (VA-04), Chairman of the House Armed Services Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, will chair a hearing on the “Capacity of U.S. Navy to Project Power with Large Surface Combatants” on Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 2:00 PM.  

“The Nation faces a number of critical decisions concerning its future large surface combatant fleet.  To make these decisions, Congress must be aware of the growing demands upon our large surface combatants and the Navy’s plans to meet them.  Given the growing demand for ballistic missile defense and other cruiser and destroyer capabilities, it is essential that we strike the right balance in the capabilities and capacity of our large surface combatant fleet.”

WHAT: Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee hearing on “Capacity of U.S. Navy to Project Power with Large Surface Combatants.” 

WHO: Rear Adm. Victorino G. Mercado, USN, Director, Assessment Division (N81); Rear Adm. Peter Fanta, Director, Surface Warfare (N96). 

WHEN: Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 2:00 PM

WHERE: 2212 Rayburn House Office Building. 
Read More

Answering Your Questions on TAA, TPA, & TPP


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 laying out where we go from here.

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: 

  • In what many reports are calling a major defeat for the President, TAA (Trade Adjustment Assistance) was voted on and defeated on the House Floor this past Friday. I voted against TAA, which is an ineffective government unemployment program that costs taxpayers over $1 billion annually to provide benefits to displaced workers who have been impacted by foreign competitors. The Obama Administration has used very loose eligibility standards for TAA benefits, raising concerns that this program not only burdens taxpayers, but also increases the size and scope of the federal government, which is why I voted against this part of the legislation.
  • Separately, I supported language that allows Congress to set the rules for negotiating free trade agreements – so America can get the best deal possible. The President already possesses the authority to negotiate trade agreements on his own. I believe it is critical that we limit the President’s trade negotiating authority, and create a framework around the Administration’s negotiations, with strict standards for accountability and oversight, as Congress has done to every Administration since Franklin D. Roosevelt.

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:

  • While the full text of the trade agreement (TPP) won’t be public until the final version has been hammered out, any Member of Congress can access the text, which is kept at the Capitol for their viewing convenience. In fact, just last week, I was able to review the current version of the text.
  • However, you can read the entire text of the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which specifically outlines the requirements the President MUST meet, here, or you can read a summary of the bill, here.
  • Throughout trade negotiations, the Administration is also required to provide detailed briefings for Members and make public summaries of the negotiations available for all Americans to review.
  • For the first time, under this TPA bill, the full text of any free trade agreement must be made public and posted online before the President can even sign off on it. That’s 60 days for the American people and Congress to review, analyze, and evaluate the deal.
  • Then, before the agreement can legally go into effect, it must come to Congress for a vote. If the objectives outlined in TPA are not met, or Congress isn’t satisfied by the final agreement, both the House of Representatives and the Senate retain their constitutional right to reject the final text of any trade agreement.

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. 

  • Currently, China is aggressively moving to strengthen their trade partnerships around the world.  In fact, the Chinese recently concluded trade agreements with over ten countries in the Asia-Pacific region in order to compete with the U.S.
  • Further delays on TPA by the United States give China a strategic advantage in establishing the rules of the road for trade in the region, impacting U.S. national security and the interests of our Asia-Pacific allies. Learn more.
  • Further, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) makes up the world’s third-most populous region and is expected to rise by over 10% -- reaching up to 690 million – by 2020. Cutting ourselves out of this growing market by ceding it to China means cutting American companies out of opportunities for exponential economic growth.

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.

In summary…
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

Loading legislation ... one moment please
Loading votes ... one moment please

CSPAN 06 18 2015 02 27 48

2015-06-19 17:50:14

Forbes Defends Carriers on House Floor

2015-05-14 20:53:53

Forbes Speaks on the House Floor About USA Freedom Act

2015-05-13 20:26:22

First Pitch for Chesapeake Little League Opening Day

2015-04-22 21:48:19

Forbes Questions Panel on China's Naval Growth

2015-04-17 14:20:03

Forbes Talks Iran Deal on Lou Dobbs

2015-04-16 12:54:04

Forbes Questions ICE Director Sarah Saldana

2015-04-14 17:40:43

Forbes Discusses Sequestration, Budget on the House Floor

2015-03-24 22:29:17

Forbes Discusses GITMO on Fox News Channel with Neil Cavuto

2015-03-20 13:54:14

Rep Forbes clashes with Secretary of Defense over President’s Budget

2015-03-18 15:07:58

Forbes Questions Panel at Armed Services Hearing on 2016 Budget

2015-03-18 13:24:38

Forbes Questions Panel during a Judiciary Hearing on Immigration

2015-02-25 20:23:50

Forbes Joins Heritage Foundation to Discuss the Decline of U.S. Military

2015-02-25 18:26:00

Forbes on the Murder of Jordanian ISIS Hostage

2015-02-05 15:48:16

Forbes: A Vision for National Defense

2014-12-09 17:00:32

Rep Forbes on America’s Newsroom discussing Hagel’s Resignation

2014-11-24 17:36:36

Forbes Speaks with Judge Pirro on the President's Executive Action on Immigration

2014-11-24 17:23:05

Forbes Calls Administration's Executive Action on Amnesty "Staggering Arrogance"

2014-11-20 14:53:54

Forbes Discusses Ebola, Imposing Quarantine Rules, and Other Challenges

2014-10-30 16:00:33

Forbes Discusses ICE’s Release of Aggravated Felons on “Justice with Judge Jeanine”

2014-10-27 18:13:59

Contact Information

2135 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-6365
Fax 202-226-1170

Committee Assignments

Armed Services


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.

Serving With

Rob Wittman


Scott Rigell


Robert Hurt


Bob Goodlatte


Dave Brat


Morgan Griffith


Barbara Comstock


Recent Videos