Welcome to the response to John Faso’s weekly newsletter “Work Week With Congressman Faso.”

Each week we will highlight what the Congressman is neglecting to tell his constituents, point out his inconsistencies and hypocrisies and show how he damages NY-19 with his devotion to Trump and the Republican Agenda.

Week of April 29

John Faso’s statements from his weekly newsletter are in red:

Before we begin this week’s rebuttal:

Congressman Faso, you have yet to comment on the firing of the House Chaplain, Father Conroy.

As you no doubt know, Father Conroy prayed for lawmakers to “guarantee that there are not winners and losers under new tax laws, but benefits balanced and shared by all Americans.” Shortly after, he said, he was admonished by House Speaker Paul Ryan.

“Padre, you just got to stay out of politics,” Father Conroy recalled the speaker saying.

What was Father Conroy’s crime?  According to you and your party, the great Republican Tax Bill is “balanced and shared by all Americans.”   Why would your Speaker fire a man of the cloth for stating what you yourself and the Speaker have stated.

Or, are you realizing, like many Americans, that the Tax Bill is a sham Americans now know that the Bill gives pennies (or $1.50) to most Americans and massive cuts to the wealthiest and large corporations.

We await your comment on the firing of Father Conroy.

Upper Delaware Council Holds Awards Ceremony

The Upper Delaware Council performs critical work to conserve and manage the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River. During the UDC’s 30th Annual Awards Ceremony, I was awarded the Advocacy Award for work my office has done to support the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program and the UDC’s work.

I am thrilled to be able to work so closely with UDC to achieve our shared goal of managing our vital natural resources that are important to the local outdoor economy. Thank you to UDC for the honor and I look forward to continuing to stand side by side to support the river.

Faso pretends to be protecting our natural resources

Faso brags about getting an advocacy award for supporting the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program, claiming that he is working with Interior Secretary Zinke to secure funding for this project.  Are we supposed to feel reassured and grateful to Faso for working with Zinke? Zinke is one of the biggest crooks among the Trump Cabinet appointees. Zinke has come under fire for failing to disclose investment in a gun company, for exempting Florida from offshore drilling expansion, and getting scrutinized for yet another costly-to-tax-payers’ helicopter ride. Zinke wants to shrink the national parks to open them for drilling, including Oregon’s Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument and Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante monuments.  Because of Zinke, 9 of 12 members of the National Park System Advisory Board quit in disgust, citing concern over the Trump administration’s priorities regarding the national parks. Zinke is launching a massive overhaul of the department that would move tens of thousands of Interior Department employees and uproot their lives.

Think big, John.  If you say you’re standing “side by side” with a river restoration project and supposedly getting funding for it from Zinke, are you also working with Zinke to make sure there is no drilling off New York coasts?  Are you also working with Zinke to manage our “vital natural resources that are important to the local outdoor economy”?

Fat chance.

Ranked as 18th Most Bipartisan Member of the House by Lugar Center Index

Upstate New Yorkers sent me to Washington to solve real problems. I am encouraged that the Lugar Center ranks me 18th out of 435 House members, one of the most bipartisan members in Congress. This puts me in the top 5% of all House member by this measure. Their index is a good tool that the public can use to see which members are working in a bipartisan way to solve real problems. Our bipartisan work is not just limited to votes, but also developing real solutions. Working with my colleagues across the aisle is the most effective way to tackle the issues that will help New York families and businesses. I’m glad bipartisanship is not going unnoticed and I hope Congress can begin to prioritize compromise and problem solving.

How low does the bar have to be set?

We, unfortunately, live in an age of hyper partisanship. Witness, his week President Trump jettisoned centuries of tradition and failed to invite a single Democrat to a State Dinner.

Saying you are ranked 18th, or even 1st, in terms of bipartisanship is meaningless.

Community-wide Opioid Forum in Sullivan County

On Monday evening, I participated in a community-wide opioid prevention forum at Monticello High School that was hosted by the RJK PTO and the Monticello Central School District. Parents, guardians, and adult community members were invited to attend the event and listen to presentations that detailed information about opioid abuse and ways which the drug culture operates.  Opioid abuse is a genuine epidemic and a national crisis. Educational efforts are a big part of combating the opioid epidemic as for years opioids were overprescribed and their addictive qualities insufficiently highlighted. Community initiatives have shown to be one of the more effective methods of stemming this crisis. I was glad to participate and am encouraged by the knowledge and work local officials are doing on the ground.

Again:  The Opioid Crisis is an healthcare issue.  You voted to take away healthcare from your  constituents.
Meeting with Walton Central School District’s Safety Committee

No child or educator should feel unsafe in their own school. Thank you to Superintendent Roger Clough and members of the Walton Central School District Safety Committee for engaging in an exchange of ideas about strengthened school safety measures. Through dialogue with officials on the ground, I am better able to help solve these challenges and affect real change.

There are other voices you are ignoring.  

Namely the students themselves – the ones most affected by your devotion to the NRA and its quest to drive up profits for gun manufacturers.  If you really cared about school safety, you would embrace sensible gun safety measures such universal background checks, closing the gun-show loopholes,  and banning the sale of assault-style weapons and bump stocks.

Listen to the students.

Meeting with Constituents Advocating for Efforts to Combat Childhood Cancer

The Alliance for Childhood Cancer’s mission is to advocate on behalf of the youngest victims of cancer. I met with members of the Alliance to discuss the Childhood Cancer STAR Act, of which I am a supporter, and robust medical research funding.  I have long been an advocate for robust funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and research organizations that targets some of the most debilitating diseases. Thank you for coming in to meet with me.

Congressman Faso,

are you capable of acknowledging how devastating your vote to repeal the Affordable Healthcare Act was to families you claim to care about above?  Families would face almost certain bankruptcy in order to save their child.

You lied to your constituent Andrea Mitchell, who is suffering from a severe illness, when you voted to take hers — and thousands of your constituents’ — healthcare away.

Columbia County Honor a Vet

I had the pleasure of attending the Columbia County Honor a Vet ceremony to recognize the service of Robert and John Shaw. The brothers lived and worked in Columbia County and both returned home to New York after their respective service. Robert enlisted in the United States Army, rising to the rank of Tech. Sgt. Grade 5 (Tec/5) during his service in World War II. John enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, rising to the rank of Corporal (Cpl) during his service in the Korean War.

Honoring Vets with the Leatherstocking Honor Flight
Last Saturday, I had the opportunity to attend the sendoff for the Leatherstocking Honor Flight trip from Albany to Washington D.C. This flight featured over 80 Vietnam War veterans, including many from Otsego, Delaware and Schoharie Counties.  Leatherstocking Honor Flight facilitates trips for veterans to Washington to visit the memorials created in honor of their service. Thank you for your service to America!


Two Veterans post in the same week?  You must be feeling guilty and ashamed about the nomination of Ronny Jackson for Secretary of the Veterans Affair Department.

If you aren’t feeling guilty and ashamed – you should be.

Donald Trump’s pick or Ronny Jackson, a man so uniquely unqualified and so profoundly inept, was a slap in the face to our Veterans.  Obviously, the President gave no substantive consideration and did no vetting when choosing the person to head the VA. Our Veterans depend on the VA, such blatant disregard for its future is an outrage.

Where is your outrage at the callousness of our President toward this institution and the veterans that it serves?

That’s it for this week’s rebuttal.
To be continued next week….

Catskills Freedom Network is a federally registered political committee. Prepared by CFN PAC and not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.