Representative Bob Goodlatte

Vetting of Bob Goodlatte:

Biography of Bob Goodlatte can be found here.

Goodlatte has represented the 6th District of Virginia as a Congressman since 1993. A map of the 6th District of Virginia can be found by clicking here. The 6th District includes Roanoke, Lynchburg and continues north on the Interstate 81 byway all the way to Strausburg, VA.

Highlights:

  • Goodlatte has one of the best attendance records in Congress. He has cast a vote in 99% of recorded votes since 1993.
  • Goodlatte had the political courage to vote against the original Tarp Bill under the Bush Administration HR 1424
  • Goodlatte has voted against all of the high profile Obama era legislation (Cap and Trade, Health Care Reform, multiple additional stimulus bills, Financial Reform and the Hate Crimes Expansion Bill)
  • Goodlatte is a supporter of the Balanced Budget Amendment and is an annual sponsor of the bill.
  • Goodlatte has a positive rating from most Conservative Groups for his voting records. A list of those groups can be found here.

Lowlights:

  • When Goodlatte was elected, he pledged to only serve 10 years. He has broken that pledge.
  • In 2006, he sponsored H.R. 4777, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act.  The Act was passed at midnight the day Congress adjourned before the 2006 elections. Prior to it being added to the bill, the gambling provisions had not been debated by any Congressional committee. The bill excluded online horse racing gambling. He claimed moral reasons for pushing for a ban on Internet gambling, but he received almost $40,000 in campaign contributions from the horse racing industry. Goodlatte returned those contributions to the horse racing industry. However, Goodlatte created a Political Action Committee (PAC) under his name and named it the ‘Good Fund’. The ‘Good Fund’, it was reported, received more than $15,000 in contributions from the Horse Racing industry and those funds were not returned.  On top of the untoward appearance of funding for this bill, we question the Constitutional legitimacy of the Federal Government regulating online gaming.
  • Goodlatte supported the Patriot Act HR 3199 and HR 6166 the Military Commissions Act. Both of these bills, passed in the aftermath of 9/11, may have been well intentioned attempts to protect the country but they created dangerous inroads on Constitutional Freedoms that have been expanded upon by the Obama Administration.
  • Goodlatte voted for the Head Start Initiative. Supporting this legislation further empowered the Department of Education. The Department of Education is a clear violation of the Constitution of the United States as nowhere in the enumerated powers in Article1, Section 8 is the Federal Government given authority over education. By voting for this initiative, no matter how well intentioned, he violated his Oath of Office to defend the Constitution of the United States.
  • Goodlatte voted for the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit in 2003. This ill conceived bill helped explode the national debt and it created the environment for the additional unconstitutional health care reform laws under the Obama Administration.

Overall Rating:

Failure with some hope of redemption.

Representative Bob Goodlatte has consistently opposed the Obama Administration’s initiatives. However, during the Bush Administration, Goodlatte’s record was inconsistent with several examples of going along with Bush Era initiatives that were politically expedient but Constitutionally and/or fiscally questionable. Upholding an Oath is critical to us and we cannot excuse the examples in which he has violated his Oath of Office to support the Constitution of the United States.

Goodlatte is well versed on issues, generally responsive to contact from voters and consistently shows up in DC for votes. We urge Representative Goodlatte to begin taking the Oath of Office more seriously. He needs to support and defend the Constitution of the United States with all of his votes, no matter what side of the aisle the legislation comes from.  He showed some courage when he voted against Bush’s initial TARP bill and we urge him to take more of a leadership role in defense of the Constitution of the United States.

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