U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx said a strong GOP effort is vital in response to the Democratic Party’s “grand scheme” to secure state and federal legislative majorities when she spoke at the Wilkes County Republican Party’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Dinner Saturday night at the Stone Center in North Wilkesboro.
Speaking to crowd of about 180 people at the annual political fundraiser, Foxx said Republicans can maintain a majority in the U.S. House, “but it won’t be easy because they (Democrats) are going all out against the president and against us…. North Carolina has a bullseye on it this fall.”
She added, “If we allow them to get the majority, we will lose our rights. All of our rights, starting with a few” such as the Second Amendment.
Foxx, of Banner Elk, has represented the 5th District in Congress since 2005 and is seeking re-election.
She faces challengers Cortland J. Meador Jr. of Mocksville and Dillon Gentry of Banner Elk in a GOP primary on May 8. Republican and Democratic primary winners will square off in the Nov. 6 general election. The two Democratic candidates are Jenny Marshall or Denise (D.D.) Adams.
She noted that when Republicans gained a majority in the N.C. House and N.C. Senate in 2010, GOP leaders were able to draw state and federal legislative boundaries. “And they did exactly what the Democrats have done for 140 years, which is making districts that gave the advantage to our party.”
Since then, she said, GOP legislators “have lowered taxes, reduced regulations and they’ve done so much good for the State of North Carolina.”
She said former President Barack Obama and Eric Holder, attorney general under Obama, are working fulltime to get Democrats elected to four to six more N.C. House seats and four more N.C. Senate seats. This would end the GOP supermajority of the state legislature. A party with the supermajority holds three-fifths of the legislative seats, giving it the ability to override the governor if he vetoes a bill.
She said Democrats plan to spend millions to win enough seats in 2020 to be the majority again. “You are going to see the most expensive legislative races in North Carolina that you’ve ever seen.” A strong Democratic turnout in North Carolina would also impact congressional candidates, she added.
Foxx said North Carolina may gain a congressional seat if the 2020 Census only counts people with citizenship instead of still counting all residents. Opponents say only counting citizens would benefit Republicans. Several states have stated plans to sue to block President Donald Trump’s administration from adding the citizenship question to the 2020 Census, arguing that it violates the Constitution. Foxx said she supports including the question and only counting citizens.
She said the liberal left’s plans include tying up Republicans with lawsuits “because they cannot win at the ballot box. They only place they can win is with Carter, Clinton and Obama-era judges. That’s why they’re trying to slow President Trump down with getting his judges in place.”
Foxx said she believes Republicans “literally are doing the Lord’s work. I think we represent a majority of the American people through our values. Our values and their values are the same.”
The media doesn’t want Republicans to be successful, she said. “You’ve got to keep that in mind, in everything you hear. It’s their job to tear down Republicans. And they’ll do it every way they can, including out and out lies.”
Foxx said even Fox News sometimes is wrong, which she said was the case with the 2018 omnibus bill. She said the $1.3 trillion, 2,232-page spending plan, signed by the president on March 23, was among the most misconstrued and misunderstood pieces of federal legislation in a long time. The House approved the bill 256-167, with 145 Republicans (including Foxx) and 111 Democrats voting for and 90 Republicans and 77 Democrats voting against it.
Foxx said legislators were criticized for hurriedly passing the omnibus bill without reading it, but she said that wasn’t true because 95-98 percent of it was 12 appropriations bills reviewed and approved earlier by the House.
“The House is doing its work but the Senate hasn’t been able to” in this regard because Democratic Senators are holding up the process by insisting on using the 30 hours for debate they are entitled to in each confirmation hearing for a Trump nominee, even when it means sitting in silence.
“It’s an abomination—an abomination of the process,” said Foxx, adding that Democratic senators are trying to delay approval of Trump’s nominees as long as possible while hoping that Democrats win enough Senate seats in November to regain the majority. There are 49 Democrats and 51 Republicans in the Senate.
“We literally have never seen a situation like this. He (Trump) can’t get ambassadors, secretaries, and assistant secretaries approved.” She said that out of around 4,000 jobs or committee seats requiring Senate approval to be filled, Trump has been able to get approval of fewer than about 200.
She said Fox News reported that the omnibus bill funded Planned Parenthood. “That is just an out and out lie. There aren’t many times I can say something is an out and out lie, but it is. I want you to know that there are no funds in that omnibus bill directed to Planned Parenthood,” said Foxx.
Numerous news outlets reported that the omnibus bill included over $500 million for Planned Parenthood.
Foxx said a Trump appointee in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services who is pro-life and very conservative will help keep grants from going to Planned Parenthood. She noted that the Hyde Amendment, which bars use of federal funds for abortion with limited exceptions, was again approved.
Foxx said it was incorrectly reported that the omnibus bill didn’t fund the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. “There is a lot of funding in there for the border wall and I think you’ll hear the president talk more and more about that.
The New York Times reported that the omnibus legislation has nearly $1.6 billion for border security. This include $641 million for about 33 miles of new fencing, but it prohibits building a concrete structure or other prototypes the president considered, the newspaper reported.
Foxx said the media incorrectly says Republicans control the House. “We have a majority, but we are not in control. The way for us to be in control would be to have about 290 votes. We have got 238.”
She said there have never been more than 55 Republicans in the Senate, but Democrats have had 60-plus many times. “I hope, this fall, we can pick up some (Republican) votes in the Senate. I don’t think we can get up to 60, but we know because of President Trump getting elected that miracles still happen.”
Foxx said she wanted to dispel several untruths about congressmen, including that they don’t pay into Social Security, that they can retire after one term with full pay, that they get free health care and that the government will pay off the college debts of their children. She said none of this is true and added that President Trump is correct when he talks about fake news.
Rudy Holbrook, running for re-election to the Wilkes Board of Education, introduced Foxx. She was a state senator from 1994-2004, president of Mayland Community College in Spruce Pine from 1987-1994 and was on the Watauga County school board from 1976-1988. She also taught at Caldwell Community College and Appalachian State University and was deputy secretary for management at the N.C. Department of Administration.
Foxx graduated from Crossnore High School in Avery County, has a bachelor of arts degree and an M.A.C.T. in Sociology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an education doctorate degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.