Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Leslie Byrne Calls for End to Waste and Fraud in Defense Contracting

The following is a statement by Leslie Byrne, congressional candidate for the 11th CD, on the Senate Democratic Policy Committee oversight hearing on waste, fraud and corruption in the Iraq War. It's about time somebody stood up to the contractors and the Bush administration culture of corruption, which has viewed the war in Iraq as a business opportunity to pad their pockets.

Byrne: “It’s time to end waste, fraud and abuse in defense contracting”

On Monday, May 12, 2008 at 2:00 p.m., the Senate Democratic Policy Committee will hold an oversight hearing on waste, fraud and corruption in Iraq. The following is a statement from Leslie Byrne, Democratic candidate for Congress in Virginia’s 11th District, on ending the abuses in Iraq contracting.

“I am encouraged to see the Senate Democrats take the lead on investigating the impact of waste, fraud and abuse on our efforts to end the bloodshed in Iraq. And I’m outraged that there is a need for such an oversight hearing.American taxpayers shouldn’t be footing the bill for unethical defense contractors who want to bolster their bottom lines at our expense.

“The American people are being asked to continue spending billions, perhaps even trillions, on the war and reconstruction efforts in Iraq, and far too much of that money has been disappearing. According to a report from the Government Accountability Office, approximately $10 billion has already been lost-- $4.9 billion through contract overpricing and waste.
“The Iraq War has cost over $456 billion through fiscal year 2007. Taxpayers in Virginia’s 11th congressional district will pay $2.1 billion of the total Iraq War spending approved to date. For the same amount of money, we could have provided 592,123 people with health care or paid 30,786 new elementary school teachers. We also could have hired 33,420 port container inspectors or 45,160 public safety officers, doing much more to actually promote our national security.

“No more swindling of the American taxpayer. It’s time to end the waste, fraud and abuse in defense contracting. I wholeheartedly endorse the War Profiteering Prevention Act. In the event that it is not approved by the Senate, I will actively work to pass it again in the 111th Congress.

“The people of the Virginia 11th deserve a representative they can trust, and who is free of any conflict of interest, to see this fight through. I’ve been publicly opposed to the Iraq War since the very beginning, and as a signatory to the Responsible Plan to End the War I am part of a coalition with practical ideas on how to heal the wounds our invasion has caused. Throughout my years in the House of Delegates, the State Senate, and the U.S. House of Representatives, I have never been afraid to stand up for what I believe. After years of public service, Northern Virginians know I can be trusted to do what’s right.”

1 comment:

Ed said...


I'm not sure if you know that Leslie is a featured candidate on Emily's List but you should definitely link to that URL: EMILY'S List: Leslie Byrne. This race has national implications and a link out to the plug from EMILY'S List would be good.

I don't have a vote in the district but having read your blog and it's support for Byrne, I saw a good connection here.

Also, I would like to hear what you have to say about the Ledbetter decision.

Here is a post I made recently regarding Hillary Clinton that is related to the women's movement and Leslie Byrne's candidacy: Hillary Clinton backer backlash.

All the best.