Tag Archive: Frank LoBiondo

’08 Will Be Tougher For NJ House Republicans

In two years, Blue State Republicans will be talking about the cakewalk environment that was 2006.

First, Tom Schaller writes in this month’s The American Prospect:

[President Bush’s] cowboy foreign policy, coupled with “big-government conservative” spending and governmental intrusions from the start of life (stem cells) to the end (Terry Schiavo), may have appealed to his southern base. The rest of the country, however, wasn’t buying it. This November, since they could only vent their anger about the war in Iraq and the direction of the country on the nearest Republican, the non-Southerners voted out their own. The great irony of … 2006 is that those largely Southern conservatives who were leading the Republican Party’s downfall will survive to legislate another day, while many reluctant Rust Belt Republicans became unwitting victims….

And this piece of an editorial from Friday’s NY Times:

G.O.P. leaders are preparing to walk away from their most basic constitutional responsibility – passing a budget. Instead of finishing work on government spending bills needed for the next year, they’re reported to be planning nothing more than a cut-and-paste, short-term continuing resolution. That will allow them to run out early from their lame-duck session, leaving the mess to the incoming Democrats in January.

Stopgap resolutions create a budget autopilot that does not allow for shifting conditions and costs in education, housing and other major agencies. Administrators warn that it will cause cuts in school breakfasts and shelter for the poor. There is no need for this angst except that Republican strategists plotting a comeback clearly want to pour sand into the Democrats’ agenda even before they take the gavel.

The entire New Jersey delegation of House Republicans should think about what Schaller is saying and what their colleagues are doing.

At times, Republicans like Rep. LoBiondo can be appreciated. He stood up to President Bush and the House Republicans when they repealed prevailing wages and worker protections after Hurricane Katrina. But his efforts took effect almost two months too late. Nevermind the fact that a Democratic Congress would have never let the repeal happen in the first place.

You and others were lousy at bringing your party back from the brink while you were in the majority. Think about what will happen if you are just as ineffective in the minority — if you stand by while your leaders engage in petty antics to make governing the country even harder after the mess you made? People won’t find your ‘moderate’ brand of Republicanism refreshing — they will find it enabling.

If we can only expect more news like this, then call your friends on K Street, because you’re soon to be out of a job.

Accountability vs. Excuses: why NJ’s Shameful Six ALL deserve the boot

The silence is deafening as New Jersey’s Congressional delegation awaits instructions from Washington on what to say or do next over the escalating page scandal. It should come as no surprise.

With Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert’s announcement that he’s sorry, but he won’t resign, despite mounting evidence that he was complicit in a partisan coverup of Rep. Mark Foley’s inappropriate advances toward teenage Congressional pages, the sad truth about NJ’s “Shameful Six” has finally been laid bare: they are incapable of holding their own accountable for mistakes – no matter how grave.

Not upon learning their leaders ignored warnings in the summer of 2001.

Not when their administration utterly bungled its response to Katrina.

Not after a failed Iraq policy that is three years and almost three thousand American deaths (and so many more lives ruined) in the making.

And, not now.

They are the worst kind of apologists – all 6 voters for impeachment of President Clinton, mind you – without the courage to stand up against their own disgraced Republican leadership, or own up to their disgraced policies.

Not one deserves reelection.

Attn: NJ Republican Congressmen, Hastert Knew in ’03

In a story published in today’s Washington Post, Kirk Fordam, former chief of staff to disgraced pedophile Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL), said he approached the office of Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) in 2003 with information about Foley’s inappropriate conduct toward underage male pages.


2003.


That’s three years ago, if you’re doing the math with me.

The account by Kirk Fordham, who resigned yesterday from his job with another senior lawmaker, pushed back to 2003 or earlier the time when Hastert’s staff reportedly became aware of Foley’s questionable behavior concerning teenagers working on Capitol Hill.


It raised new questions about Hastert’s assertions that senior GOP leaders were aware only of “over-friendly” e-mails from 2005 that they say did not raise alarm bells when they came to light this year.


“The fact is, even prior to the existence of the Foley e-mail exchanges, I had more than one conversation with senior staff at the highest levels of the House of Representatives, asking them to intervene when I was informed of Mr. Foley’s inappropriate behavior,” said Fordham, who was Foley’s chief of staff for 10 years…


Fordham says his warnings to Hastert’s office dealt with a different matter: reports of Foley’s troubling interest in male pages working in the Capitol Hill complex. He says he implored the highest ranks of the GOP leadership to intervene to thwart behavior that he had been unable to stop after multiple confrontations with his boss. Sources close to the matter say a meeting took place between a senior Hastert aide and Foley before Fordham’s January 2004 departure, probably in 2003, in a small conference room on the third floor of the Capitol.


But the matter appears to have been dropped.


The response from the office of Speaker Hastert?

Hastert’s chief of staff, Scott Palmer, said in a statement, “What Kirk Fordham said did not happen.” The speaker’s office also said that the entire matter has been referred to the House ethics committee, “and we fully expect that the bipartisan panel will do what it needs to do to investigate this matter and protect the integrity of the House.”


So let’s get this straight.


Fordam, who just resigned his congressional staff position, who was a longtime friend and aide to Foley, and who has really got nothing official to lose– is just making things up. And Hastert, who has everything to lose, is entirely blameless for the whole situation, even in face of the fact that as the Speaker, he’s ultimately responsible for everything that transpires in the House.


This is not a partisan issue; it’s a trust issue. It’s an issue of protecting our children, making sure they are safe from child preadators everywhere from the streets even to in the halls of Congress. Hastert clearly can’t recognize this– hence the obfuscation and spin and denial of clearly established fact.


How do NJ’s Republican Congressmen feel about him continuing to lead their Caucus and the US House of Representatives? Use this as an open thread…let’s get them on record:


Frank A. LoBiondo (R-02):

Jim Saxton (R-03): As of 10/3, office unprepared to comment

Chris Smith (R-04):

Scott Garrett (R-05):

Michael Ferguson (R-07):

Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11):

“Technically, LoBiondo shouldn’t even be in the race”

That’s my favorite line in an article about Rep. Frank LoBiondo,
Viola Thomas-Hughes, and the independent challengers in
Today’s Sunbeam.  The article points out that LoBiondo is breaking his personal pledge to follow term limits. 

My second favorite line is the headline:  “Hopefuls on Rep. LoBiondo’s trail.”  Sadly, it turns out to have nothing to do with me. Most of the article describes the various independent candidates who are running.  You won’t be surprised to learn that they have no interest in dropping out despite Thomas-Hughes’s appeal.

There’s actually only serious issue addressed in the article:

NJ Legislators team for Water Protection Law

NJ Legislators Frank Lautenberg, Rob Andrews and Frank Lobiondo have teamed together to help craft the Delaware River Protection Act.  According to the Courier Post Article, the legislation came about following an oil spill of the Athos I tanker in 2004 that dumped 265,000 gallons of tar-like oil on the river….

The legislation more than doubles the cost per tonnage capacity a single-hull ship owner will have to pay to clean up a hazardous spill, from $1,200 to $3,000 per tonnage capacity. The law applies to all ports in the country.

Congressman Andrews said “while the law affects all ports nationwide, it will have a particular impact on the Delaware River, where 80 percent of shipping traffic is crude oil tankers.  Other Provisions of the law include…

Mandatory reporting of objects that are lost overboard (a large anchor that did not belong to the Athos I was recovered near its wreckage);

Create a new committee to report to Congress on ways to improve oil-spill response and prevention;

Establish a pilot project on the Delaware River and bay to recover submerged oil.

These look like good common sense steps, but what do I know.  I’m actually kinda surprised that you don’t have to report if something, oh say an anchor randomly falls overboard.  What do you think?

LoBiondo is a State of Mind

Here’s a fun thing to do with the kids on a rainy day.

Go to Google and type in “Congressman Lobiondo”.

Look at the first hit that comes up:


WTF?  He’s a Republican Representative from New York who is a New Jersey elected and appointed official?

Now I understand why nothing gets done in Washington.  No one even knows where they are from, much less where they are.

I hear that happens when your head is stuffed up your…

Wielding Power with Authority

I kid you not, I received the following “notification” of Congressional action today:

REP. LOBIONDO LEADS CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION IN EFFORTS TO PROTECT ATLANTIC CITY’S ‘BOARDWALK’ FROM MONOPOLY REDESIGN

Yes, boys and girls, our fearless Republicans in the House are defending the right of Atlantic City’s boardwalk to be the highest priced property on the boardgame “Monopoly”.

Then I started thinking…maybe the Congressional Dems signed on so that LoBiondo would be encouraged to “go public” with his assinine quest.

Here’s what that might look like on CSPAN: