Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
About this Blog   |   On Twitter   |   Follow us on Facebook   |   RSS Feeds RSS Feed

Look who's not coming to breakfast: Defense Secretary Gates

Rosalind Helderman

Staff for Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) are expressing disappointment that Defense Secretary Robert Gates will not be attending a breakfast meeting Tuesday at the Pentagon to discuss Gates' proposal to close a combat command in the Hampton Roads area.

McDonnell is scheduled to meet with Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn and Joint Chiefs Vice Chairman Gen. James E. Cartwright to learn more about why Gates proposed closing the U.S. Joint Forces Command, as part of a broader proposal to cut military costs in coming years. Gates has also proposed slashing military contractors by 10 percent a year for three years, a shift that could rock Northern Virginia.

McDonnell spokeswoman Stacey Johnson notes McDonnell requested a meeting with Gates himself and is not pleased that the secretary will not come.

"We've been asking for a meeting with Secretary Gates for some time," Johnson said. "We are disappointed he will not be in attendence."

"But the request still stands," she said.

Also disappointed with Gates: Sen. Jim Webb (D) and Sen. Mark Warner (D). In a joint letter to Gates released late Monday, they say he has "provided no new insights or information" about the analysis that supports the military reductions, which will cost thousands of jobs in the Hampton Roads area.

They write that Gates has shown a "troubling" lack of transparency over his reasoning for proposing the closure.

"We have yet to receive a detailed analysis relating to your closure recommendation despite numerous requests for this information. While we commend your efforts to reduce overhead and to apply savings to force structure and modernization, the failure to consult more fully with Congress in a transparent way works against the Department's ultimate goal of becoming more cost-conscious and efficient in providing for our nation's defense," they write.

In addition to McDonnell's Pentagon meeting Tuesday, the Senate Armed Forces Committee will hold an oversight hearing on the budget reductions at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

By Rosalind Helderman  | September 27, 2010; 5:34 PM ET
Categories:  Mark Warner, Robert F. McDonnell, Rosalind Helderman  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Norquist: McDonnell's ABC plan does not raise taxes
Next: McDonnell reports little progress overturning JFCOM closure

No comments have been posted to this entry.

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.

characters remaining

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company