Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Interview with Rick Waugh - Part 3 of 5

Rick Waugh is the Democrat running for Congress against Republican Eric Cantor in Virginia's 7th Congressional District. I was able to sit down with Rick and ask him some questions. Here's Part 3 of our interview, in which we focused mostly on the military and defense.
Q. 12. Your son is serving in the military—the Army—where is he stationed? Has he served in Iraq or Afghanistan?

Rick Waugh: He is stationed at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. He served for a year in Iraq, and came home safely.

Q. 13. So you have a first-hand understanding of the issues facing military families, don't you?

Rick Waugh: Yes. Being that I was brought up in a military household, and my son is still serving, I have very good knowledge of the issues facing military families. The stresses of knowing a family member is in harms way, and the joy of watching him or her return safely is a roller coaster ride to say the least. Not to mention the stresses of the entire family regarding finances, health insurances, and the treatment of veterans.

Q. 14. What can the federal government do to better serve our veterans?

Rick Waugh: This was more than evident when I was the Social Services Director for the nursing home. Too often in order to receive long term care, many have to sell everything they have ever earned including their homes, their life insurance policies, and their possessions. It seems that our government isn’t doing enough to take care of our veterans, our elderly, and our disabled. If they spend their entire livelihoods protecting us, and providing us a safe and secure nation, shouldn’t we do the same for them with a safe and secure life at home?

Q. 15. The Pentagon (leadership), Norfolk Naval Yard (naval construction and base), and Arlington National Cemetery (memorial) are all distinctive parts of Virginia's contribution to our nation's defense. What is your perspective on Virginia's unique role in U.S. defense policy?

Rick Waugh: Well, we also are the intelligence backbone of Washington as well. Our military might is evident here in Virginia, and that is one of the qualities that make Virginia distinctive. My father retired from Norfolk Naval Base, and I am grateful for the experiences of the military life when I was a boy. That life taught me the ideas of determination, fairness, and discipline. I also learned a lot of history during that period. One lesson I was taught was the importance of diplomacy and how it needs to be used first, before risking the lives of anyone. But I also learned how our solders need to be well equipped, well funded, and fully volunteered. We must have clear missions set before us, with exit strategies, so that the United States military can defend our country in a manner that is swift and effective.
I'll be publishing the rest of this interview over the course of the day, finishing up before 2:00 PM, before everyone disappears for the weekend. You don't want to miss the fourth and fifth parts of the interview where Rick Waugh takes on the Virginia GOP and his Republican opponent Eric Cantor.

Part 1 of 5 - Family and Personal Background
Part 2 of 5 - Jobs and the Economy
Part 3 of 5 - Military and Defense
Part 4 of 5 - Virginia Politics
Part 5 of 5 - Eric Cantor

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