Sara Jacobs at a debate for candidates of the 53rd Congressional District. / File photo by Megan Wood

This post originally appeared in the Jan. 21 Politics Report. Subscribe to the newsletter here.

For a special podcast this week, we sat down with U.S. Rep. Sara Jacobs. In just two years, Jacobs has positioned herself to move into congressional leadership roles. What’s more interesting, though, is she has regularly criticized, if not voted against, defense spending bills – it’s not a typical tact for a San Diego congressional representative. She has been able to secure more family assistance but there’s a deeper disagreement happening.

A couple weeks ago, the magazine Foreign Policy quoted Jacobs saying she thought we were essentially building too many Navy ships. We asked her to explain in more depth.

She cited the number of service members who are waiting for food assistance or being served by the San Diego Food Bank and how much trouble many of them have finding housing in San Diego.

“To me, it makes no sense to spend tons of money on airplanes and ships beyond what the Pentagon even says they need when we’re not investing in what we need to do to actually be able to man those ships, to actually take care of the people who are going to be prosecuting that fight. And so, to me, it’s very clear if we were spending $800 billion on making sure every military family had housing and, you know, food on the table and childcare then it would be a different story,” she said.

She said the number of ships itself is not what we should be aiming for.

“There are many in the national security community who believe that we need an X-number-ship Navy, and that if we have that amount of ships, that’s what we’ll need to deter China. And don’t think about sort of the quality-of-life issues that are affecting our recruitment and our retention and our military personnel,” she said.

You can listen to the full conversation here.

Scott Lewis

Scott Lewis oversees Voice of San Diego’s operations, website and daily functions as Editor in Chief. He also writes about local politics, where he frequently...

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  1. My dad was enlisted in the Air Force and I was the first child, I didn’t know any better but I can remember getting Bisquick pancakes for breakfast, lunch and dinner made with powdered milk, sometime with canned peas because they were cheap. Now looking back I realize they ran out of money at the end of the month and needed cheap meals for a couple of days. Sigh. . . its only when you are older that you appreciate what your parents had to go through. Thanks Mom, Thanks Dad, Miss you both.

    No member of our Armed Forces should have to use Food Stamps to feed their family.

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