It was a packed meeting on Monday at the Rappahannock Community College in Warsaw, with veterans, concerned citizens, politicians and youth in attendance.
On March 11, three of the seven Republican candidates vying for the position of Virginia’s lieutenant governor were present, answering questions in a public forum on how they would benefit the state if they took office.
After addressing a range of activities in regards to the state, the final question focused on how they would benefit local areas like the Northern Neck.
Del. Scott Lingamfelter (R-Woodbridge), Bishop E.W. Jackson of Chesapeake and Sen. Steve Martin (R-Chesterfield) offered various platforms on how they would create jobs in the region and grow the local economy.
Martin said the state needed to improve local fisheries, acknowledge when they have strengthened and then remove government restraints to allow those industries to flourish.
“We’ve been doing what we can and not always the best with regards to oyster populations out there,” Martin said.
Martin also emphasized reducing government intrusion on the state level as well as pushing back federal intrusion in regards to activity on the Chesapeake Bay.
Furthermore, he proposed repealing the corporate income tax and reducing the amount of restrictions on local businesses’ operations.
Jackson said the best way to help local economies grow was through talking directly to people.
“Stop imposing these regulations and rules that interfere with industry when the people themselves can give you insight and ideas about how to deal with this stuff,” Jackson said.
He stressed that the problem the federal and state governments currently face is that they don’t listen to the people’s suggestions.
Lingamfelter, who along with his wife Shelley own a vacation home in Sandy Point, said it was important to stand up for property rights of local residents, particularly small farmers.
“When they take your property,” Lingamfelter told one audience member before pointing to another and saying: “You’re next.”
“And when they’re done with you, they’re coming for you,” he added as he pointed to a third member.
Lingamfelter said that small farmers had a right to earn a living.
“The government shouldn’t be wading over them like a big old wet blanket all the time,” he said.
Lingamfelter also favored revitalizing the region’s seafood industry.
“That bay is out there for us, given to us by God for our recreation and our use,” Lingamfelter said. “It’s ours, and we ought to fish it, profit from it and enjoy it.”
Other candidates for lieutenant governor who did not appear at the forum include Jeannemarie Davis, Corey Stewart, Susan Stimpson and Peter Snyder.
Surrogates went in place of Davis, Stewart and Stimpson to speak to their attributes, but were not allowed to participate in the debate.
Visit the candidates’ websites to learn more about their political campaigns and positions on statewide issues.
For Jackson, visit http://www.jacksonforlg.com/. For Lingamfelter, visit http://va31st.com/ or http://www.vote4scott.com/. For Martin, visit http://senatorstevemartin.com/.
For more information about the following candidates, visit http://www.jeannemarie4lg.com/ for Davis, http://www.coreystewart.com/ for Stewart, http://susanstimpson.com/ for Stimpson or http://www.petesnyder.com/ for Snyder.