Q&A with Ben Cline
Q: How did you come to the decision to run for the Virginia 6th District seat this year?
A: I’ve spent the majority of my adult life in public service — as a staffer for Congressman Goodlatte, then as prosecutor trying domestic violence cases in Harrisonburg and Appomattox, and as the Delegate for the 24th House of Delegates District. I’ve been honored to serve in those capacities and when I heard that Congressman Goodlatte was retiring, I felt that I was best equipped to effectively serve the citizens of the 6th Congressional District. It would be an honor to represent Virginia’s 6th Congressional District in Washington.
Q: Why do you want to serve the 6th District?
A: I truly enjoy serving and representing my constituents, and this new role would be a greater opportunity to do that. I want to roll up my sleeves and get to work for the people here, to advance the progress we are making in the current economy, but also to attempt to break through the rampant dysfunction in Washington.
Q: How do you plan on working with other House leaders who may sit on the opposite side of the aisle than you?
A: Just as I have done in the House of Delegates on a number of issues like education and domestic violence, I will work to reach across the aisle to try and find common ground on issues that will help my constituents. Both sides can reach common ground, especially regarding infrastructure improvements, which are so badly needed. Our roads and bridges are in disrepair in many areas across the 6th District. I plan to work with both sides in order to address this issue.
Q: What is a personal belief you hold that grounds your political work?
A: I believe in personal responsibility, individual freedom and equality of opportunity so that any child in America can grow up in a world where they can achieve their dreams if they put enough hard work into it. I believe the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights are the best governing documents the world has ever seen. I believe in lowering taxes to free up capital so that families can invest, save or use their hard-earned money however they see fit, rather than the government wasting it on duplicative or ineffective programs. And I believe that we are made in God’s image, and because of this, every life has value — born and unborn.
Q: Why should college students vote for you?
A: I strongly believe in working on and supporting policies that promote economic opportunities and a strong economy. The current course we are on under Republican leadership and policies, as well as President Trump’s leadership, provide the best opportunities for college graduates to succeed. I also intend to work with Congress and the Trump administration on lowering college tuition, in part by reducing federal regulations on colleges, so they will not have to spend as much on compliance, which would reduce the cost of tuition.
Q: Representative Goodlatte is retiring after 13 terms serving the 6th District. How do you plan to follow such a prominent legacy and position in the community?
A: Congressman Goodlatte is a man of great achievement, integrity, gentility and deep regard for public service and the commonwealth. I hope to lead by his example. I commit to thoughtful constituent service, listening to the concerns of the district, and representing their interests.
Q: If elected, what type of working relationship do you foresee having with the current White House administration?
A: I believe our economy is flourishing largely because of the policies that the current administration has pursued, such as tax reform. I look forward to a positive working relationship with President Trump, especially on economic policies. I plan to work closely with (the) White House to make sure that prosperity thrives throughout the United States and in our part of the Commonwealth of Virginia.