Frelinghuysen has no words for Charlottesville, or us

  • As White Supremacists Kill, Frelinghuysen Says Nothing
  • Immigration: Slamming Shut The Golden Door?     cranky_rodney.jpg
  • Whack-a-mole Military Threat: North Korea?  Wait, can you say Venezuela?


As White Supremacists Kill, Frelinghuysen Says Nothing

In the aftermath of Saturday’s terrorist attack at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, VA,  Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen was the last of the NJ congressional delegation to address the events. Finally at 2 P.M. this afternoon, almost 48 hours after Heather Heyer’s murder, and after the President made an amended condemnation under pressure,  Frelinghuysen issued a two sentence “statement” on his website, saying simply, “The hatred and violence by White Supremacists in Charlottesville must be condemned. Such views and actions have no place in America.”  A reader, reviewing the statement multiple times in its entirety, could be forgiven for wondering, “Condemned by whom?”

By Sunday, all of New Jersey’s Congressional representatives but Frelinghuysen had condemned the white nationalists and neo-Nazis who convened a Unite the Right demonstration attended by 1,000 followers. Other NJ GOP delegates at least used the first person in their condemnations and Chris Smith from NJ-4 called the the white supremacist rally “deplorable.”  As indeed it was. The event left one dead and 19 injured after a car plowed into a group of counter-protesters. The driver was a man who rallied with white supremacists earlier in the day. He has been charged with 2nd degree murder and malicious intent to wound, among other felonies, and was denied bail on Monday. Two police officers were also killed in a helicopter accident while monitoring the events.

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Frelinghuysen must address the racist hatred in Charlotteville

To Representative Frelinghuysen:

We are disappointed with your silence following the disgraceful events in Charlottesville, VA. President Trump's response has been inadequate at best leaving Americans everywhere feeling frightened and uncertain. This includes your constituents here in New Jersey's 11th congressional district. In times like these we look to you to represent our values by using your voice to condemn hatred and protect the safety of all citizens.  This is a matter of morality not politics --members of your party have already spoken out, including Speaker Ryan and Majority Leader McConnell.  We ask that you clearly and unambiguously condemn white supremacy and all bigoted hatred.  We ask that you condemn the domestic terrorists who took over the streets of Charlottesville this weekend.  We must stand with and for each other in peace and acceptance.

-NJ 11th for Change

UPDATE 8/14/17:

Monday afternoon, 2 days after the riots, more than a full day after this statement and hours after his office opened to constituents asking for him to speak out against Racism and White Supremacists, Representative Frelinghuysen issued a 2 sentence written statement about the events in Charlottesville and posted it on his website

"The hatred and violence by White Supremacists in Charlottesville must be condemned. Such views and actions have no place in America."

Update 8/15/17:

Sometime Tuesday evening, after Trump once again gave cover to neo-nazi white supremacists in a press conference, Frelinghuysen added a sentence and an exclamation point to his original statement and tweeted it out.  The new statement now reads in its entirety:

"The hatred and violence by white supremacists in Charlottesville must be condemned. There is no comparison between those on the side of bigotry and hate, and those who manned the barriers to protest them!  The views and actions of white supremacists have no place in America."

The Rodney Report: Summer Sun Edition


August has an almost scary capacity for emptying out neighborhoods and slowing down calendars here in NJ-11. Friends and family in other regions of the country may be getting the kids ready to return to school by mid-month, but in the Garden State we are deeper than ever into summer-break territory. And so is Washington, D.C.

With Congress out on recess, the remaining minibus spending bills remain parked in the Appropriations shed, to be revved up afresh when the representatives return on Sept. 5. Recess, as we know, is a classic time for representatives to make in-district appearances, as Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen did by popping in to Morristown’s National Night Out on Aug. 2. Drop us a line on our Facebook page if you spot him in your neighborhood, will you?

And meanwhile, here is some summer reading to keep you occupied in your hammock or on your beach towel:


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NJ 11 Commission district poll results

Rep. Frelinghuysen trails in early NJ 11th Poll.

Independent Poll: Healthcare vote costs Republican incumbent an additional 9 points in next year’s election.

With the seeming collapse of the Affordable Care Act repeal process in the Senate, members of the House who voted in support of a highly unpopular bill have been left with a lot to defend, and little to show for it. The potentially catastrophic effects of these votes for Republicans in swing districts are evident from new results in a ReconMR poll of registered voters in New Jersey’s 11th Congressional district, sponsored by the independent grassroots group NJ 11th for Change.  Republican Rep. Frelinghuysen trails by 9.4 points, 36.7% vs the Democratic Nominee 46.1%

Cross Tab Results

Frequency Results

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The Rodney Report: What's Up, What's Down

This week: cranky_rodney_image.jpg

  • The cuts that built the wall
  • The amazing vanishing amendment
  • Lower grants for higher ed
  • That military policy tweet
  • Rodney gets his wish (just not the way he wished it)


The Bricks In The Wall: Priorities Emerge

How to view the $1.6 billion the House threw at the border wall Donald Trump’s been building in his mind since the primaries? An expensive pacifier? A fraction of the projected overall cost?

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NJ-11th Congressional District Voters Reject ACA Repeal/Replace

Independent Poll: Repeal/Replace, Medicaid Cuts, Planned Parenthood Defunding All Deeply Unpopular In District

In a result that mirrors longstanding concerns of nonpartisan group NJ 11th For Change, voters in the Garden State’s 11th congressional district emphatically oppose repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according to an independent poll conducted last week.
Overall, only 24.7 percent support an outright repeal, while 58.7 percent want Congress to improve the existing law, and 10.5 percent say the ACA should be left alone. When asked specifically about the vote of their representative, 12 term congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, to replace the ACA with the House AHCA, voters rejected his actions with a similar 23.5 percent approval versus 59.7 percent disapproval of his vote for the bill in May.
The findings contrast starkly with assertions by Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, that his constituents largely oppose the ACA. Frelinghuysen, whose support was key in moving a repeal/replace measure to the Senate, has not released data on constituent feedback. 

The independent poll commissioned by NJ 11th For Change surveyed 800 voters on key district issues. The representative sample reflected the district’s overall demographics, such as party affiliation, gender and age. NJ 11th For Change is one of the first local grassroots groups to conduct statistically valid Congressional District opinion research. The group is continuing to analyze the data and plans to share findings on additional policy issues besides health care.

“We advocate for accountability, transparency, and responsive representation for our entire district,” said Debra Caplan, Board Member of NJ 11th For Change. “Repeal/Replace has always felt out of step with our understanding of district values. These numbers certainly affirm that view.”

In another contrast to Frelinghuysen’s voting record, federal funding for Planned Parenthood had strong district support, with 72.6 percent backing continued support of non-abortion health services to women, as opposed to 22.7 percent wanting it eliminated. In addition, 66.7 percent oppose future cuts to Medicaid, while 20.7 percent support cuts.

The findings parallel the feedback heard at NJ 11th For Change events. Since January, members have expressed worries about the impact posed by drastic healthcare proposals – loss of vital services; financial burdens from lost or reduced health coverage; and the impact of Medicaid cuts on 70,000 district residents.
“Our members have held vigils, taken buses to Washington, D.C., and organized five district town halls, which Mr. Frelinghuysen refused to attend,” said Elizabeth Juviler, Board Member of NJ11th For Change. “This poll only adds credibility to eight months of their feedback. Our thousands of members truly reflect the overall feelings of New Jersey’s 11th district.”

Additional details on survey questions and polling methodology below.

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The Rodney Report: Show And Tell

This Week: 

  • Showing Us ... What?
  • Congress And The Tangled Web of Trump And Russia     cranky_rodney.jpg
  • The Air We Breathe, The Water We Drink
  • What's Riding In Those Minibuses
  • Who's Paying For That Wall
  • Rodney: Live At Last?


Showing Us … What?

In a July 20 editorial, The Daily Record urged Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen to “show us the money” to add luster to an image that’s been a bit dulled of late. The editorial board cited a list of recent complaints, such as Frelinghuysen’s lack of town halls, his AHCA vote and his targeting of NJ 11th For Change’s Saily Avelenda. They then praised his role in retaining $11 million for a Chemical Safety Board Trump had targeted, along with a badly needed $900 million in appropriations-bill funding for New Jersey transportation.

Does the funding balance the books? Money is important, but so is an advocate in Washington who represents our values, and whom we can trust to stand for us. 

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Rodney’s Senior Policy Advisor: A recent visit by Adam McGovern

NJ11thForChange_Primary_Logo_2Color.pngRodney’s Senior Policy Advisor: A recent visit by Adam McGovern 

A July 19 meeting with Rodney’s Senior Policy Advisor, Steve Wilson, at the DC office afforded the kind of dialogue we’ve been seeking with the Congressman himself.

ACA Repeal

Steve seemed sure that the Senate’s proposed ACA repeal-only bill would lack enough votes to pass, but confirmed that, if it did, there was no counterpart House bill it could be linked with to move on to the president’s desk.

Planned Parenthood (and comment about Trump Cabinet)

I asked why Planned Parenthood is targeted as an add-on to every ACA-repeal bill so far; this seems to me like a maneuver to push through a political goal as an attachment to a broader bill people are paying more attention to. Steve said that, as far as he could tell, the targeting of PP was “political,” and part of a common practice of attaching controversial measures to bills which have a better chance of passing than the measure would alone. 

I noted that Rodney’s second-round vote for the AHCA would damage PP by attacking Medicaid funding, and that there seemed to be no reason for Rodney to have departed from his former votes in favor of PP funding other than loyalty to GOP party hierarchy. Steve said, “That’s an issue that has passionate people on both sides.” I replied that *abortion* is an issue that has passionate people on both sides, but that is not relevant to PP funding since no federal funds have gone to abortion in many years now. I said that some surveys suggest that a majority even of Republican women are pro-choice, and that there has certainly been no surge in “pro-life” sentiment in the 11th District to coincide with Rodney’s withdrawal of PP support in the last two years; nationally the district was split almost 50/50 for Trump and Hilary (a factor Steve acknowledged), and with redistricting we’ve had an influx of liberal-leaning citizens in Essex County.

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The Rodney Report: Budgetary Blues

  • Rodney’s healthcare: bad for constituents, bad for New Jersey, bad for the country; higher cost, higher taxes and worse care: What’s not to like?
  • Republicans’ Family Planning Problemcranky-rodney.jpg
  • Environmental Spending: A Budgetary Scavenger Hunt
  • From Russia With Lots (and Lots) of Love
  • Equine Slaughter


“Don’t tell me what you value,” Vice President Joe Biden famously said. “Show me your budget and I’ll tell you what you value”  Rep. Frelinghuysen’s moment of truth to show what he values is here as Appropriations bills are coming out of their sub-committees establishing the nation’s budget and showing us what those with power value.


Rodney’s healthcare: bad for constituents, bad for New Jersey, bad for the country; higher cost, higher taxes and worse care: What’s not to like?

Frelinghuysen’s Appropriations Committee has been hard at work this week dismantling an essential part of the ACA. The Fiscal Year 2018 Financial Services Bill “advances many other conservative priorities by cutting spending, zeroing out programs and maintaining pro-life policies.”

Specifically, the bill instructs the IRS to stop collecting penalties for people who do not have healthcare coverage, in other words to stop enforcing “the mandate.” Whatever eventually happens with new Healthcare laws in congress, this provision inflames the uncertainty and destabilizes insurance markets with the risk or perhaps the aim of dismantling Obamacare without a single vote to repeal.

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Rodney's Budget; A bad look for America

From the Subcommittee House Appropriation bills we see an agenda.

It calls for “defunding Obamacare,” cutting environmental protections, slashing family planning, and would serve school kids empty calories

During the past two weeks, the House Appropriations Committee, which Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen chairs, and its subcommittees have approved a series of spending bills for 2018. The draft bills will form Frelinghuysen’s budget that will go to the House for approval. While they largely reject most aspects of the President Trump’s infamous one-page “skinny bill,” they would:

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