Controversial Comments in Campaign to Land New FBI Headquarters

The fight to land the new FBI headquarters got nasty last week.

Stewart Schwartz of the Coalition for Smarter growth said that while he knows the fight for the FBI headquarters is competitive, Fairfax County Development Association President Gerry Gordon’s comments at a forum went too far.

”He made a couple of cracks about Loudoun County but nothing like this,” Schwartz said.

According to the Washington Business Journal, Gordon said the FBI would be appropriate for Prince George’s County because that’s where the agency would find the people it picks up.

“We all thought it was out of line at a time when we should be working together to find the best site regionally for the FBI,” Schwartz said.

Gordon told News4 he didn’t have time to talk Tuesday but released a statement saying, “I made that comment in the context of talking about why Fairfax County is the most appropriate location for the FBI headquarters, including our safe neighborhoods and decades-long tradition of good government.”
“Quite frankly, I was stunned,” Prince George's County Deputy Chief of Economic Development Aubrey Thagard said.

He called the comments below the belt and unprofessional.
“We have a county itself that’s on the move and believes that it is headed toward a great renaissance period again in this county, so to hear those types of comments is disheartening,” he said. “It’s disappointing.”
Maryland’s U.S. congressmen, senators, universities located in Prince George’s County and Gov. Martin O’Malley all wrote letters to the General Service Administration supporting the FBI moving to the county, specifically at the Greenbelt Metro Station. Meanwhile, Fairfax County officials say they offer the best locations with their focus on the Franconia-Springfield Metro Station.
The Fairfax County Development Association is an independent board created by the commonwealth, not a branch of Fairfax County’s government.

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