"\As a member of the Armed Services and Budget Committees, one of my top priorities has been replacing the across-the-board sequester cuts that are harming Virginia's economy. Last year, I successfully fought for the refueling and overhaul of the USS George Washington, which supports thousands of jobs in Hampton Roads and contributes to our nation's military readiness. Obtaining full FY2015 funding for the USS George Washington was an important step, but we still have work to do as we begin budgeting for the years ahead.
Maintaining the 11 aircraft carrier fleet is critical for our nation's ability to meet the threats of today's world and carry out humanitarian missions. In 2014 alone, the USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77) was critical in responding with strikes against ISIL and assisting humanitarian relief efforts on Mt. Sinjar. Meanwhile, when North Korea threatened its neighbors in July, the USS George Washington (CVN 73) responded to deter any further escalation.
In today's world, aircraft carriers are the "flexible force" that allow us to respond rapidly to crises across the globe. That's why I led the bipartisan Virginia congressional delegation in a letter to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to express our continued support for the 11 aircraft carrier fleet in advance of the release of the President's Fiscal Year 2016 budget proposal.
I'm proud to work with colleagues in both houses, on both sides of the aisle on such an important issue for Virginia's economy and our national security.
To read our letter to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, click here.
Senator Tim Kaine"