Virgil Goode

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This is a profile of a former U.S. Representative. (See the Virginia portal for all incumbents, candidates and blogs.)
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Virgil Goode Jr. currently serves the 5th Congressional district of Virginia

Virgil Hamlin Goode, Jr., a Republican, has represented the Fifth Congressional District of Virginia in the U.S. House of Representatives since 1996. (map) He was defeated by Tom Perriello (D) in the 2008 general election.

Record and controversies

General information about important bills and votes for can be found in Congresspedia's articles on legislation. You can add information you find on how Virgil Goode voted by clicking the "[edit]" link to the right and typing it in. Remember to cite your sources!

Iraq War

For more information see the chart of U.S. House of Representatives votes on the Iraq War.

Goode voted for the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 that started the Iraq War.[1]

During the debate in mid-February 2007 of a nonbinding resolution opposing President Bush's troop "surge" in Iraq, Rep. Goode, who opposed the measure, argued that the U.S. must do everything possible to defeat Muslim extremism, or else it risks having the text on its money change from "In God We Trust" to "In Muhammad We Trust."

Main article: Congressional actions regarding President Bush’s 2007 proposed troop “surge” in Iraq

Environmental record

For more information on environmental legislation, see the Energy and Environment Policy Portal

Opposition to Muslim immigrants

Goode's letter

On December 7, 2006, Goode sent a letter to a constituent regarding the newly elected Rep. Keith Ellison's (D-Minn.) choice to use a Koran in an unofficial swearing-in ceremony. In the letter, Goode expressed a "fear that in the next century we will have many more Muslims in the United States":

The Muslim Representative from Minnesota was elected by the voters of that district and if Americans don't wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office and demanding the use of the Koran... I fear that in the next century we will have many more Muslims in the United States if we do not adopt the strict immigration policies that I believe are necessary to preserve the values and beliefs traditional to the United States of America... The Ten Commandments and "In God We Trust" are in the wall in my office. A Muslim student came by the office and asked why I don't have anything on my wall about the Koran. My response was clear, "As long as I have the honor of representing the citizens of the 5th District of Virginia in the United States of America, The Koran is not going to be on the wall of my office."[1]

On December 20, Goode's press secretary said the letter "speaks for itself" and that Goode has no intention of apologizing. [2]

Cunningham and MZM

In 2005, Goode again faced political controversy when a major corporate campaign donor, defense contractor MZM, Inc., was implicated in a bribery scandal that resulted in the criminal conviction and resignation of California congressman Randy "Duke" Cunningham [3]. Although he insisted that his relations with MZM were motivated solely by his interest in bringing high-paying skilled jobs to his district, Goode announced in December that he would donate the $88,000 received in MZM contributions to regional charities.

On June 30, 2006, the manager of MZM was accused of illegally funneling campaign donations to Goode. The manager, Richard Berglund, reportedly violated the Federal Election Campaign Act by "aiding and abetting" a scheme by MZM's owner to donate the funds in the name of others. According to the filing, Berglund and his wife wrote $4,000 in checks to "Representative A" in March 2005 after MZM's owner, Mitchell J. Wade, gave Berglund an equivalent amount of cash. It says that Berglund gave an additional $4,000 he received from Wade to two MZM colleagues, who then donated it to the congressman. [4]

On July 21, Berglund pled guilty to making illegal donations to the Goode. He now faces up to one year in prison for violating the Federal Election Campaign Act. When asked to comment about Berglund's plea, Goode's press secretary, Linwood Duncan, emphasized that Goode had donated all MZM-related campaign donations to charity. [5]

On Monday July 31, 2006, MZM, Inc. officially closed. Their closing came after the Pentagon announced that it would not renew their contract and former owner Mitchell Wade stated that he recieved $90,000 in contributions from Goode.[6]


Born October 17, 1946 in Richmond, Virginia, Goode attended the University of Richmond and the University of Virginia graduating with a degree in Law. He also served in the National Guard from 1969 to 1975. Goode served in the Virginia State Senate from 1973 to 1997 as a Democrat representing much of Southside. He ran for the Senate in 1982 and 1994 and was defeated in the Democratic primary both times.

Congressional career

When Congressman L. F. Payne retired in 1996, Goode won the Democratic nomination. He won election easily, as his state senate district was virtually coextensive with the congressional district. Goode's voting record was very conservative even by Southern Democratic standards. He was a politician in the mold of the old-style, land-owning "Byrd Democrats" who had preceded him.

Goode came under considerable fire in 1998, when he voted for three of the four articles of impeachment against Bill Clinton. The controversy touched off speculation that Goode might defect to the Republican side of the aisle. [7] In January 2000, he declared himself an independent. However, he began caucusing with the Republicans once the Congress reconvened and was rewarded a highly desirable seat on the Appropriations Committee for leaving the Democratic Party. [8] Goode officially became a Republican in April 2002 [9][10], just in time for the primary, making him the first Republican to represent this district since Reconstruction. He won his first full term as a Republican in November with 64% of the vote. He won reelection just as easily in 2004.

2006 elections

In 2006, Democrats nominated Al Weed to face Goode in his November 2006 bid for reelection. (See U.S. congressional elections in 2006) [11] Goode retained his seat.

Money in politics

This section contains links to – and feeds from – money in politics databases. <crpcontribdata>cid=N00002167&cycle=2006</crpcontribdata>

Links to more campaign contribution information for Virgil Goode
from the Center for Responsive Politics' site.
Fundraising profile: 2006 election cycle Career totals
Top contributors by organization/corporation: 2006 election cycle Career totals
Top contributors by industry: 2006 election cycle Career totals

Committees and Affiliations


Committee assignments in the 109th Congress (2005-2006)

  • House Committee on Appropriations
    • Subcommittee on Agriculture Rural Development Food and Drug Administration and Related Agencies
    • Subcommittee on Science State Justice and Commerce and Related Agencies

More Background Data

Wikipedia also has an article on Virgil Goode. This article may use content from the Wikipedia article under the terms of the GFDL.


DC Office:
1520 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-4711
Fax: 202-225-5681
Web Email

District Office- Charlottesville:
104 South First Street
Charlottesville, VA 22902
Phone: 434-295-6372
Fax: 434-295-6059

District Office- Danville:
437 Main Street
Danville, VA 24541
Phone: 434-792-1280
TollFree: 800-535-4008
Fax: 434-797-5942

District Office- Farmville:
515 South Main Street
Post Office Box 366
Farmville, VA 23901
Phone: 434-392-8331
Fax: 434-392-6448

District Office- Rocky Mount:
70 East Court Street, Suite 215
Rocky Mount, VA 24151
Phone: 540-484-1254
Fax: 540-484-1459

2008 Campaign Contact Information

Official Goode for Congress campaign website

Goode for Congress
235 South Main Street
Rocky Mount, VA 24151

Phone:(540) 483-9030

Articles and resources


  1. Roll call vote, Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.

External resources

Local blogs and discussion sites

External articles

Corresponding article on Wikipedia and Cause Caller. (If Cause Caller link does not work, pick from its list of senators and representatives.)

Current Office: None
111th Congress
Leadership Position:
Committees Chaired:
Ranking Member On:

110th Congress
Leadership Position:
Committees Chaired:
Ranking Member On:

Committees: House Committee on Appropriations, House Committee on Appropriations/Subcommittee on Interior and Environment and Related Agencies, House Committee on Appropriations/Subcommittee on Legislative Branch
Congressional Career
First Elected to Current Office:
November 5, 1996
First Took Current Office:
January 3, 1997
Next Election:
Term Ends:
January 3, 2009
Freshman Member?
Previous Political Work?
U.S. House of Representatives, Virginia Senate
Other Party Membership:
District Offices:
Phone: / Fax:

Campaign Contact:

Webform Email: / Email:

Campaign Offices:

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Date of Birth: October 17, 1946