PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) – As first reported by USNI News, Congressman Randy Forbes (R-4th District) is reportedly a top contender for an appointment to President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet as Secretary of the U.S. Navy.
Forbes has long been a proponent of a larger Navy and increased defense spending.
“My greatest obligation as I serve in Congress is ensuring that our heroes are the best equipped and best trained so that they never find themselves in a fair fight against those determined to destroy our way of life,” he wrote in a blog on his congressional website in April.
Forbes has served in Congress since 2001. He is a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee and chair of the Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces.
“It is hard to imagine a person more qualified to serve as Secretary of the Navy than Randy Forbes,” said Craig Quigley, of the Hampton Roads Military and Federal Facilities Alliance.
Quigley says if Forbes takes the appointment, it could spell a boom in industry for Hampton Roads.
“He has been exactly on the same page as President-elect Trump as to his goals for increasing defense spending in the Navy, in the Army, in the Marine Corps, in the Air Force, across the board,” Quigley said. “The devil is in the details and you’ve got to work out how to pay for that, and the legislation is not yet written. But, if anybody can help on the Navy and Marine Corps side, it’s Randy Forbes.”
Quigley says that could mean more jobs for our area — not just in shipbuilding and repairs, but that we could see more ships homeported in our area, along with more use of training facilities for operational forces, and increased spending for NASA and the Coast Guard.
However, Quigley adds, that all of that is only if the legislation gets written, and the funding gets the green light.
“Before Tuesday, the future that I saw would have been a relatively flat level of federal spending across the board — both military, NASA, Energy Department, Coast Guard — and all of those things are things that are drivers of our economy in Hampton Roads. But at least with President Trump and his stated objectives of increasing defense spending, we will benefit from that, if he can get it done.”
WAVY.com reached out to Congressman Forbes office twice Friday. Our emails have not yet been returned.