Washington, D.C. —Representative Duncan Hunter announced today that he will be joined by U.S. Representative Randy Forbes (VA-4) in hosting a listening session, entitled “Defending Our Defenders,” at the Shiley Theatre at the University of San Diego on Wednesday, June 13 at 6:30 PM PT.  The town hall-style event will begin with an introduction from a Congressional delegation and feature a moderated “open mic” for attendees to express opinions and ask questions pertaining to defense budget cuts and the regional impact.

“San Diego is rich in military history and tradition,” said Representative Hunter, a member of the House Armed Services Committee and veteran of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  “The Navy and the Marine Corps have a longstanding relationship with San Diego and their presence is a major part of our regional economy and identity.  With the shift in defense strategy to the Pacific, San Diego will remain a strategic asset with its network of resources, infrastructure and technology.  And while this might limit the severity of impact brought on by deep budget reductions, the triggering of $1 trillion in cuts over the next decade will be felt throughout the entire country and each service branch.  There will be reductions in end strength, meaning a smaller Marine Corps and Army.  There will be a much smaller Navy, despite a shift in strategy that puts greater emphasis on sea power.  And there will be quality jobs lost in San Diego and elsewhere.   This forum is intended to help the community better understand the depth of these cuts and discuss how military families, installations and the workforce might be affected.”

If no action is taken by January 1, $500 billion will be cut from national defense under current law. This is in addition to $450 billion in cuts already targeting the defense budget—amounting to nearly $1 trillion in cuts over the next ten years.  

Due to these cuts, roughly 200,000 active duty personnel will be forced out of service—the equivalent of eliminating the entire Marine Corps.  And for California, it is estimated that 125,789 jobs will be lost, along with $10.79 billion in Gross State Product.  

All concerned citizens, military retirees, veterans, small business owners, local Chambers of Commerce and contractors are invited to attend.  To RSVP, visit:http://www.eventbrite.com/event/3511205109

There will also be media availability with members of the Congressional delegation before the event.  To attend, contact Joe Kasper at (202) 225-5672 for more information.