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Audio Feature: This week in News for Rep. John Faso 20180619

Jun 15, 2018 10:45 am
Here's the week in the news for Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook), the District 19 Congressperson for the WGXC listening area. The Fivethirtyeight.com website currently reports Faso votes with Donald Trump's positions 88.6 percent of the time, up slightly from last week. Click here to download or play an audio version of this report (7:32).

The American Farm Bureau Federation reports that the U.S. Senate begins marking up their version of the Farm Bill on June 13. In the U.S. House, Rep. John Faso voted for their version of the Farm Bill May 18, but not enough of his fellow Republicans joined him, and it failed, 198-213. It did not pass there because conservative Republicans used the Farm Bill as a bargaining chip to get a vote in an immigration bill, and because o Democrats voted for the bill, because Republicans added more work requirements for recipients of food stamps. There was a May 3 pray-in outside Faso's Kingston office protesting his vote for that version of the bill. The existing Farm Bill expires this fall.

• The seven Democrats in the Congressional primary June 26 for New York's 19th District are now in the stunt campaign portion of the election. The Daily Freeman reports that Pat Ryan is marching from the home of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in Hyde Park to U.S. Rep. John Faso’s district office in Kingston, June 16. Ryan says he is doing the march to demand action to end gun violence, but he and other candidates are attempting to stand out in a crowded field. The Times Union reported that David Clegg began a three-day, 200-mile bike trip June 6, visiting a number of pollution hot spots in the district on the way. Gareth Rhodes has been at this longer, visiting all 163 towns and cities in the district before the June 26 vote. Erin Collier, Jeff Beals, Antonio Delgado, and Brian Flynn are also running in the June 26 election. The winner will face incumbent Faso (R-Kinderhook) in November.
• Local Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook) and New York Senator Chuck Schumer don't always agree, and Faso and President Donald Trump don't often disagree. In fact, the Fivethirtyeight.com website currently reports Faso votes with Donald Trump's positions 88.3 percent of the time. But this week, both Faso and Schumer Tweeted against Trump's position that Russia should rejoin the G-7 Conference as the G-8. "President Trump is wrong to suggest bringing Putin's Russia back to G-7 nations. Russia continues to be a malign influence around the world and should be excluded until it alters behavior," Faso tweeted. Schumer agreed, tweeting, "Readmitting Russia to the G-7 would reward Vladimir Putin for actions the U.S. and its allies have condemned, and would clearly be contrary to America’s interests. The president’s foreign policy decision making seems to become more erratic every day." Russia was kicked out of the G-8 after invading Ukraine and shooting down a passenger airplane.

Dan Freedman reports in the Albany Times Union that opinion is split among local representatives after President Donald Trump meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in Singapore. Trump agreed to end military exercises on the Korean peninsula, and invite the dictator to the U.S., while receiving a vague promise of more negotiations. “President Trump and the administration should be commended for groundbreaking efforts with the ultimate goal of denuclearizing the Korean peninsula,” said Rep. John Faso, R-Kinderhook. “There is a lot of work to be done and many potential obstacles. However, there is a renewed sense of optimism that this time negotiations will yield a different result.” New York Senator Chuck Schumer disagreed on the Senate floor June 12. “By granting a meeting with Chairman Kim, President Trump has granted a brutal and repressive dictatorship the international legitimacy it has long craved,” Schumer said. “For the United States, it’s permanent proof that we have legitimized a brutal dictator who has starved his own people,” he said. “If the United States is unable to win concrete, lasting concessions from North Korea, the meeting alone will be a victory for Kim Jong Un.” New York's other senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, tweeted, "I hope North Korea is serious about this effort and determined to join the international community. And I encourage the Trump administration to do the hard work of getting a strong, verifiable agreement. Read the full story in the Albany Times Union.

In a June 12 press release Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook) "applauded the passage of H.R. 5685, the Medicare Opioid Safety Education Act of 2018 by voice vote." The bill only passed in the U.S. House, and needs Senate and presidential approval to become law. "This bill will improve efforts to educate seniors on alternatives to traditional opioid pain medication through the Medicare Part D program," Faso's press release said about the bill he sponsored. “Nearly one in three seniors on Medicare Part D were prescribed an opioid during 2016. That statistic underlines just how prevalent the use of opioid pain killers is among seniors, who often are dealing with issues stemming from chronic pain,” said Faso in the press release. “One of the best ways to combat the opioid crisis is to better educate the public on these risks, and to educate them on alternatives. I am glad this common-sense legislation has passed the House and will be included in a large package of opioid bills being sent to the Senate.” On June 12 Faso also voted for the Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers Act, which got 383 votes, with 13 Republicans voting against.

Chris McKenna reports at The Fray that a U.S. House Republican Super Political Action Committee is reserving a million dollars for advertisements to support Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook) in the Congressional election this fall. The Congressional Leadership Fund is buying ad time for Faso and nine other Republican incumbents this year. “Thanks to Speaker Paul Ryan and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s leadership in Congress, CLF continues to break fundraising records, allowing us to be more aggressive in adding new races and increasing our previous buys,” said Corry Bliss, executive director of the Super PAC said in a press release on June 11. “These efforts ensure that CLF will have the resources needed to prevent Republican members of Congress from being outspent this fall.” Seven Democrats are facing off in a June 26 primary election to face Faso in November. Among the Democrats, Antonio Delgado had more money in his coffers than Faso as of March 31, with Pat Ryan and Brian Flynn slightly behind Faso money on hand. Read the full story at The Fray.

• On June 14, Faso voted for the Thrive Act which would force some people receiving vouchers for public housing into substance abuse programs. The bill passed 230-173, with only a few Republicans voting against, and only a few Democrats voting in favor.