James Webb on Principles & Values

Democratic Sr Senator


Endorsed Allen in 2000; turned away because of Iraq blunder

Q: In Nov. 2000, you endorsed George Allen. How can you endorse someone and then run against him?

WEBB: A) I thought George Allen would be a leader, and B) I think that the Republican Party has reached the point where it’s mostly negativity rather than affirmative leadership. I affiliated with the Republican Party based on national security issues toward the end of the Vietnam War, and was never particularly comfortable with them, particularly on economic issues. And what you’ve seen over the last six years is a war that is an incredible strategic blunder of historic proportions.

Q: Did you go see Sen. Allen and talk to him about the war in Iraq before it began?

WEBB: Yes, I did. I spent an hour with Sen. Allen discussing with him that there was not an exit strategy because the people in this administration did not intend to leave. And from that point forward I decided that, although I had perhaps a personal regard for him on one level, politically that I could not support him anymore.

Source: VA Senate debate on Meet the Press with Tim Russert, p. 1 , Sep 17, 2006

America doesn’t lack ideas, it lacks leaders

America doesn’t lack ideas, it lacks leaders willing to stand up and make courageous decisions. Jim Webb was born fighting. He has fought-and continues to fight-to protect American values.

Jim understands the many challenges facing Americans today: an unpopular war, skyrocketing health care costs, a shrinking job market and rising inequality in society. Jim believes in the strength of American character and the ingenuity of the American people.

Source: 2006 Senate campaign website, webbforsenate.com, “Issues” , May 2, 2006

Progressive approach prioritizing fairness and justice

Jim believes that solutions will be found using a progressive approach to policy that prioritizes fairness and justice, focused on four major themes:
  • Refocusing America’s foreign and defense policies in a way that truly protects our national interests and seeks harmony where they are not threatened.
  • Repairing the country’s basic infrastructure, which has eroded badly over the past decade, and developing more creative ways to assist disaster-stricken areas such as those in New Orleans and along the Gulf coast.
  • Reinstituting notions of true fairness in American society, including issues of race, class, and economic advantage; and
  • Restoring the Constitutional role of the Congress as an equal partner, reining in the unbridled power of the Presidency.
    Source: 2006 Senate campaign website, webbforsenate.com, “Issues” , May 2, 2006

    Marines take care of their people; politicians have not

    I was a Marine. My brother was a Marine. My son is a Marine. And in the Marines we have a creed - a theory of leadership specific to the Corps but representing an idea that applies to all Americans. Take care of your people.

    Never send them into harm’s way unless you can justify their risk, and are willing to share that risk. Believe in them. Support them. And never waste a life. Any Marine will tell you that this creed cuts across political boundaries, racial boundaries, and class boundaries.

    But we have been letting them down. Our politics has been letting them down; our leaders have been letting them down. Unfortunately, Iraq is just one symptom of a much more seriously troubled administration. And George Allen is in the middle of this.

    Source: Campaign announcement speech , Apr 28, 2006

    Secretary of the Navy, published author; decorated veteran

    Why James Webb ? James Webb was the first Naval Academy graduate in history to become Secretary of the Navy: Source: Draft Webb website, www.draftjameswebb.com , Jan 3, 2006

    Converted from Republican; supported Robb & Kerry