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:


Quinnipiac University released some poll data on Aug. 3. Some findings from the nationally prominent polling institute: 68 percent of those surveyed said transgender people should serve in the military. Also, voters largely disapprove of the GOP handling of health care policy. Hmmm. Some of this reminds us a bit of other poll numbers we’ve seen.

Frelinghuysen’s latest e-newsletter includes a lot of news about veterans programs, including the House’s last-minute injection of funds for the cash-strapped Veterans Choice Program. In other newsletter news, district high schoolers should definitely check out that Congressional App Challenge.

The Wall Street Journal offers a video on what to watch for during the August recess. Two things in particular, says WSJ: (A) What will lawmakers hear about health care – are constituents happy that ACA repeal failed, or not? (B) What will constituents have to say about the Trump administration’s performance? 

The Washington Post describes a Congress eager for a respite from a session that has been dominated by “the health care storm.”

Do you get anxious wondering how long Congressional recess will last? It’s OK; we understand. Here’s a great quick-reference calendar visual from The Hill. 

-- Edited by Liz Lynch