Governor Bob McDonnell sent the following letter this morning to the President, and Virginia's congressional delegation, calling for immediate action to prevent the implementation of the sequester.
In the letter the governor writes:
"I write today to respectfully request your immediate attention to address the potential devastation that looming cuts to defense due to sequestration will have on national security and on the economic well-being of the citizens of the Commonwealth. As we all know, the defense, and other cuts in the sequester were designed to be a hammer, not a real policy. Unfortunately, inaction by you and Congress now leaves states and localities to adjust to the looming threat of this haphazard idea. While Virginia has fought its way to the lowest unemployment rate in the southeast at 5.5 percent and has seen three years of state budget surpluses, the unprecedented uncertainty caused by Washington's fiscal policies is making it harder for families, businesses, and the Commonwealth to plan for the future.
The automatic sequestration reductions mandated by the Budget Control Act of 2011 are already having a significant adverse effect on the Commonwealth. When fully implemented, they could force Virginia and other states into a recession. Sequestration-mandated reductions will be implemented with no regard for relative national priorities. These reductions will have a potentially devastating impact in the Commonwealth, with the Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads regions at the greatest risk."
The governor concludes:
"Under governors of both parties, the Commonwealth has long been noted for its fiscal stewardship, sound management, and as a premier location for business and economic development. In order to mitigate the negative impacts as effectively and as quickly as possible, and to ensure a continued robust economy in Virginia, it is critical that you lead Mr. President, and that you work with Congress to come together in the best interests of the nation, and produce the necessary legislation to avoid the disastrous effects of this ill-conceived policy. I know that you promised in your third debate of this past campaign that sequestration will not happen. Now is the time to deliver.
I urge you to repeal this blunt and unnecessary instrument and embark on the shaping of a responsible legislative alternative to meet our nation's fiscal crises."
The full letter can be read here: http://www.governor.virginia.gov/utility/docs/20130218105401171.pdf