McDonnell reports little progress overturning JFCOM closure
Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) will get a chance to meet with Defense Secretary Robert Gates to discuss defense cuts that could have a dramatic impact on the state's economy, the governor said Tuesday.
But McDonnell said a Tuesday breakfast meeting at the Pentagon with other high-ranking defense officials produced little good news for Virginians hoping to forestall the cuts.
Speaking on WTOP's monthly Ask the Governor program, McDonnell said the Pentagon acted with a "gross lack of transparency" when Gates announced in early August that he was recommending closing the U.S. Joint Forces Command in Suffolk and trimming the defense contracting budget by 30 percent.
"I wouldn' t say there's any good news," McDonnell said. "They've already made the decision. My problem now is we've got to try to unwind it."
McDonnell complained that the Defense Department did not use its own quadriennial review or the well-established Base Realignment and Closure process in making recommendations for defense cuts. And he said he was perturbed that Gates did not personally meet with him during Tuesday morning's meeting.
"It wasn't the meeting that I asked for.
To not get the meeting we asked for, was a little disappointing.
Still, McDonnell said he was promised a meeting soon with Gates and said he would keep working to overturn the decision, which he called "devastating to the Virginia economy."
Meanwhile, the Senate's Armed Forces Committee is holding a hearing today on the proposed defense budget shifts.
| September 28, 2010; 11:15 AM ET
Categories: Robert F. McDonnell, Rosalind Helderman
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Posted by: thebra | September 28, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse