Rep. J. Randy Forbes said Thursday that President Barack Obama has made mistakes on foreign policy, but he cautioned against any “kneejerk” reaction on cutting U.S. aid to Libya and Egypt in response to deadly anti-American protests.
Angry mobs stormed the U.S. Embassy in Cairo on the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, and an assault on the U.S. Consulate in the Libyan city of Benghazi killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. The violence has promoted some members of Congress to demand cutting aid to Egypt and Libya from a stopgap budget plan designed to keep the government running through March.
“I’m not excited about the foreign policy that I see this administration doing and they certainly have made some mistakes, because it’s collapsing around them,” Forbes told Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview.
“But I am also not inclined to do kind of kneejerk reaction without getting all of the facts in. The first thing we need t do, what we do best as Americans, is when we act with reason and rationality,” the Virginia Republican said.
“We have to . . . look at the implications of where that funding is going and making sure that we’re not creating more of a problem instead of solving a problem by pulling the funding,” he said.
A member of the House Armed Services Committee, Forbes spoke out against scheduled cuts to the military budget, known as sequestration, that he said would be “absolutely damaging” to both U.S. security and the economy if they are allowed to go into effect in January.
“The sequestration is going to be absolutely damaging to our strategic security of this country but also, in Virginia, it’s going to have a huge impact and it’s going to have a huge impact on the economy around the country We’re talking about the loss of as many 2 million jobs and we’re talking, in Virginia, about 204,000 jobs that are going to be lost,” Forbes said.
He told Newsmax.TV any cuts to the military budget must be carefully thought out.
“The administration’s cut $800 billion in the last two years. They’re ready to cut another half trillion in January and it’s being done with no analysis, just in arbitrary fashion,” Forbes said.
Forbes said he believed it was vital to halt sequestration before the November election, adding that Mitt Romney has pledged that “one of the first acts he would take would be to change sequestration and to start rebuilding our military. That’s why it’s important that he becomes the next president of the United States.”
He said Romney’s opposition to sequestration would help him win Virginia, and the issue would also propel Republican George Allen to victory over Democrat Tim Kaine. The two candidates, both former governors of Virginia, are competing for the seat held by retiring Sen. Jim Webb.
“Those positions are going to be huge in this election and it means that Mitt Romney, ultimately, carries Virginia as does George Allen," Forbes said.
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