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Audio Feature: This week in News for Rep. John Faso 20180515

May 12, 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 87.5 percent of the time, slightly higher than last week. Click here to download or play an audio version of this report (19:25).

• Congress was back in session this week, with several votes in the House of Representatives. Faso voted May 9 with a narrow majority of Republicans, 221-197, for the Citizens’ Right to Know Act, which sounds benign but may be unconstitutional. It requires reports about anyone in a pretrial services program names, failures to appear, previous arrest records, and the amount spent per person through the pretrial services program. Democrats voting against, and members of the American Civil Liberties Union warn about "the harms to individuals resulting from the sharing of their arrest records and personally identifying information." Republicans cheered the accountability and transparency in the bill. Faso also voted with Republicans to vote May 10 230-185 to pass the Standard Merger and Acquisition Reviews Through Equal Rules Act. The bill, now going to the Senate, would make the Department of Justice's and Federal Trade Commission’s merger review processes more similar, at the same time weakening the FTC’s ability to challenge a merger administratively.

Rachel Silberstein is reporting for Capitol Confidential the labor union 1199SEIU has chosen the one-year anniversary of the passage of the American Health Care Act to launch a radio and print ad campaign reminding local voters that three New York representatives supported that version of the bill. The ad campaign targets John Faso, who represents the 19th congressional district, as well as Elise Stefanik, of the 21st district and Claudia Tenney of the 22nd, all Republicans. “We’re certain that Congressman X was hoping you forgot his/her vote. Let’s remind him/her that there’s nothing more important than protecting access to affordable healthcare,” the ad script reads. The union said the goal of the campaign is to remind voters that efforts to sabotage healthcare and Medicaid are still “a very real threat.” Read the full story at Capitol Confidential.

The Mid-Hudson News Network reports that, on the National Day of Prayer, activists in Kingston held a pray-in outside Congressperson John Faso’s office. The May 3 pray-in was held by members of Citizen Action of New York, Hunger Action Network of New York, and the New York State Council of Churches. The new Farm Bill Faso voted out of committee last week, with added work requirements for recipients of food stamps, got much of the attention of the protesters. Hunger Action Network Executive Director Susan Zimet said of the current Food Stamp rules, that, “Seventy-five percent of the people who can work are working; the other people mostly have some kind of disability, some kind of mental illness.” Read the full story at the Mid-Hudson News Network.

The Faso for Congress campaign announced May 4 incumbent U.S. Rep. John Faso has gained another endorsement in his race for re-election. This time by the Reform Party of New York. “John Faso is the leader we need to help make the federal government more accountable and get Upstate working again,” Reform Party of New York State Secretary Frank Morano said. “As one of the most bipartisan member so Congress, John earned the Reform Party’s endorsement for his willingness to work across the aisle to find ways to make Washington work better for all Americans.” The Kinderhook Republican has now secured four lines on the November ballot: Republican, Conservative, Independence and Reform.

Liz Young reports for the Albany Business Review that Rep. John Faso (R-Kinderhook) spent part of last week in South Korea talking with leaders about their relationship with North Korea. The trip was with three Democrats and two other House Republicans, and they spoke with political leaders, such as the mayor of Seoul, and business leaders from at Samsung and Hyundai. Faso said that mentioned in the discussions were the Plug Power plant in Latham making hydrogen fuel cells, Samsung's operations in the Albany area, and the GlobalFoundries computer chip plant in Malta. "My focus was primarily on the military and diplomatic enterprise, but I hope as part of this Korean study group, we can expand our discussions with South Korean businesses in terms of potential collaborative partnerships with companies in New York state," Faso said. Read the full story in the Albany Business Review.

• Local Congressperson John Faso (R-Kinderhook), was the only local representative on board with President Donald Trump’s announcement that the United States will leave the nuclear deal with Iran. Senator Chuck Schumer said, "There are no reports that Iran has violated the agreement.... To me, the greatest worries from Iran are not right now (on) the nuclear side, but rather what they're doing in Syria." Faso agreed with Schumer on Syria, but not about leaving the deal. “This agreement was flawed from the start. Iran is the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism, and this behavior has not been altered following engagement with the United States and the other parties to the agreement. Iran's destabilizing activities in the Middle East have resulted in brutal carnage in Syria," Faso's statement said. "They continue to develop ballistic missiles capable of carrying weapons of mass destruction. And they continue to call for the destruction of the state of Israel. Until Iran decides to abandon its malign activities, the U.S. has no choice but to restore economic sanctions and withdraw from this deal.” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand disagreed. "Leaving the Iran Deal costs our country the ability to maintain a coalition to hold Iran accountable; and it severely undermines our country’s credibility. It’s especially troubling as the Trump Administration prepares to negotiate with North Korea," she Tweeted. "It took years of coordinated international sanctions, coupled with diplomacy, to reach this deal. It's a mistake to think we can simply restart this process with a clean slate. I hope that other parties in the deal continue to abide by it, and I urge the president to reconsider."

The Mid-Hudson News Network reports that the proposal to rename the Saugerties Post Office after the recently deceased Maurice Hinchey passed in the House of Representatives. Hinchey, a 79-year-old Democrat, died on November 22, 2017. Congressperson Sean Patrick Maloney (D-Cold Spring) said Hinchey was “a legend in the Hudson Valley and beyond.” Congressperson John Faso (R-Kinderhook) sponsored the resolution and spoke on the U.S. House floor about Hinchey (PLAY brief excerpt of Faso speaking on the House floor). There's a full recording of Faso's remarks about Hinchey at the WGXC Newsroom. Read the full story at the Mid-Hudson News Network.