Tim Sheridan, the California Democratic Party’s endorsed candidate for the 42nd Congressional District, criticized his opponent, 20-year incumbent Ken Calvert, for introducing legislation (H.R. 5247) that would cut 15% of the Department of Defense’s civilian workforce.
“On the surface, cutting jobs may seem to be a cost-saver,” said Sheridan, “but, as Mr. Calvert knows, the work that needs to be done is not going away. As a result, the Department of Defense will be forced to hire more expensive private contractors to do the work. In addition to losing experienced and efficient DOD workers, hiring private contractors will cost the government more money and, ultimately, add to the nation’s debt,” added Sheridan. According to the Government Accountability Office, the Department of Defense was able to reduce its spending on contractor employees by almost $1 billion in fiscal year 2010 by relying on its own civilian workforce .
“Equally important,” Sheridan noted, “Mr. Calvert’s bill is inconsistent with recent comments he made about scaling back investments in the military.” Earlier this month, according to Project Vote Smart and the American Daily Herald, Calvert said “it is simply irresponsible to drastically scale back our investments that maintain our military power, especially since the DOD has already significantly reduced its budget.” “Mr. Calvert can’t have it both ways,” Sheridan added.
The cutback means that 120,000 civilian employees will lose their jobs. This could affect the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Corona Division, an important employer in the 42nd District.
The 42nd Congressional District, a geographical area shaped like the letter “X,” runs along the I-15 corridor roughly from Corona southeast to Temecula, and northeast along the I-215 and CA-79 corridors to Beaumont. It also includes the communities of Eastvale, Norco, Lake Elsinore, Wildomar, Murrieta, Menifee, Sun City, Winchester, Homeland and Nuevo.