Campaign Democrats Elections Pennsylvania Politics

$482 Billion Deficit on Gerlach’s Watch

The below post was from the Bob Roggio campaign.  Other than that fact that Roggio is not running again, nothing else has changed regarding Gerlach’s history.  I added the updates.

Gerlach is a suit that lives off of taxpayer’s money and gives nothing back to his constituents.

$482 Billion Deficit on Gerlach’s Watch
Can Jim Gerlach disguise himself as a “Champion” for Change?

MALVERN, PA – On Monday(2008), President Bush predicted that the next President would inherit a record $482 billion deficit in 2009. According the New York Times, this staggering figure doesn’t even account for military costs in Iraq and Afghanistan, another economic stimulus package, or losses in tax revenues. [The New York Times, 7/30/08]. While Washington continues to spend billions of dollars a month in Iraq, give tax breaks to people making over $300 thousand a year, and subsidize the oil companies, Americans are contending with the rising price of gas, a stagnant economy, and soaring healthcare costs.

In a recent mail piece, the Gerlach campaign boldly states “Change Has a Champion…Congressman Jim Gerlach.” Jim Gerlach has had 6 (8) years to change the direction of our country, but rather than taking responsibility for championing the policies that have led us to this record deficit, he is now masquerading as a “Champion” for change.

“Jim Gerlach is misleading the voters of 6th District using convenient political jargon, but not having the record to support his claims,” said Roggio Campaign Manager Liz Conroy. “There is a real choice for change this year. There is a choice between giving tax cuts to people who make over 300 thousand dollars a year rather and solving our healthcare crisis. There is a choice between subsidizing the oil companies and keeping social security around for our Grandchildren. There is a choice between spending endlessly in Iraq and paying down the debt. Change is about new priorities, not empty rhetoric.”

Vote Check: Champion for Change?
Does a “Champion” for Change vote with George Bush 100% of the time on Iraq?

Gerlach Opposed Setting Benchmarks for Success in Iraq

In July 2005, Gerlach voted against a measure requiring President Bush to set public benchmarks for measuring U.S. progress in Iraq in areas such as defeating the insurgency, establishing democratic institutions and bringing U.S. troops home. Representative Robert Menendez (D-New Jersey), who made the motion, urged benchmarks “so we know exactly what we need to do to achieve success in Iraq. Up to this point, Congress has abdicated its responsibility on Iraq. The Republican leadership has provided the administration with a blank check when it comes to Iraq.” [Aberdeen American News, 7/24/05]. The motion failed 203-227. [HR 2601, Menendez motion, Vote #398, 7/20/05]

Gerlach Opposed Investigation into Contractor Spending in Iraq

In 2005, Gerlach voted against an amendment to provide $5 million to establish a select committee to investigate reconstruction efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan, including contracting procedures, protection against money laundering, and the allocation of contracts to foreign companies and small businesses. In October 2004, the International Advisory and Monitoring Board released an audit of the Bush Administration’s management of Iraqi oil proceeds and other funds in the Development Fund for Iraq. Problems found involved hundreds of millions of dollars, numerous sole source contracts and missing and nonexistent contract files. [Committee on Government Reform Minority Staff, The $5 million would have been transferred from Pentagon funds to the congressional budget. [Washington Post, 3/20/05]. The amendment failed 191-236. [HR 1268, Vote #72, 3/15/05]

Gerlach Opposed Accountability in Iraq

In 2007, Gerlach voted against requiring the president, by July 13, to submit to reports to Congress on the progress the Iraqi government has made in meeting political and military benchmarks. Within seven legislative days of receiving the reports, Congress would then have two votes on releasing the remaining $52.8 billion “fenced” funds – one on an amendment that would require the Defense Department to use the fenced funds solely to redeploy troops from Iraq, and a vote on a joint resolution releasing the funds to the Pentagon for ongoing operations in Iraq. [CQ House Action Reports, No. 110-5, 5/09/07] The bill passed 221-205. [HR 2206, Vote #333, 5/10/07]

REAL CHANGE: Bob Roggio’s priority is to bring the troops home from Iraq. He will work with the new President to achieve a responsible withdrawal and work to encourage the Iraqi Government to take responsibility for reconstruction.

Does a “Champion” for Change vote to weaken ethical restrictions on Congress?

Voted To Weaken House Ethics Rules

In 2005, Gerlach voted in favor of curtailing the ways ethics investigations can be launched. Republicans passed a package of House rules that required at least one Republican to agree before the ethics committee begins an inquiry. Former Ethics committee Chairman Joel Hefley (R-Colo.) broke with GOP leaders on the House floor, saying he thought the changes were a mistake since they were done without bipartisan discussion. The rules passed, 220-195. [HRes 5, Vote #6, 1/04/05]

Opposed Closing the Lucrative “Revolving Door” Between Lobbying & Lawmakers

In 2005, Gerlach voted against a measure to prohibit Members of the House from negotiating lucrative job deals that capitalized on their committee membership. The measure was rejected, 196-219. [HRes 5, Vote #5, 1/04/05]

Voted To Allow Lobbyists to Wine & Dine Congress

In 2003, Gerlach voted to weaken House ethics rules, pushing through language that would allow lobbyists to cater meals to members’ offices and let charities pay for lawmakers to travel and stay at golf resorts and other locales. The rules passed, 221-203. [HRes 5, Vote #4, 1/07/03]

REAL CHANGE: Bob Roggio believes that we must fight for an accountable and transparent government. We need to go further than restricting the number of years that public officials have to “cool off” before lobbying Congress. We need to curtail the influence of special interests in governance by demanding a lifetime ban on ex-lawmakers becoming registered lobbyists.

Does a “Champion” for Change take over $90,000 in campaign contributions from Big Oil, and vote to subsidize the oil and gas industry?

Gerlach Voted for Final Energy Bill that Gave Billions to Oil, Gas and Nuclear Industries

In 2005, Gerlach voted for the energy conference report that exempts oil and gas industries from some clean-water laws, streamlines permits for oil wells and power lines on public lands, and helps the hydropower industry appeal environmental restrictions. One obscure provision would repeal a Depression-era law that has prevented consolidation of public utilities, potentially transforming the nation’s electricity markets. It also includes an estimated $85 billion worth of subsidies and tax breaks for most forms of energy — including oil and gas, “clean coal,” ethanol, electricity, and solar and wind power. The bill included $2 billion for “risk insurance” in case new nuclear plants run into construction and licensing delays. And nuclear utilities will be eligible for taxpayer-backed loan guarantees of as much as 80 percent the cost of their plants. The bill passed, 275-156. [HR 6, Vote #445, 7/28/2005; Washington Post, 7/30/05; Passed 275-156; R 200-31; D 75-124; I 0-1]

Gerlach Voted Against Bill that Would Repeal Big Oil’s Tax Breaks

In 2007, Gerlach voted against H.R. 2776, a bill that would add energy derived from waves, tides, ocean currents, free flowing rivers, free flowing canals, and other marine sources to the list of qualified energy sources for the purpose of claiming renewable energy credits, unless diversionary structures such as dams or impoundments are used (Sec. 102). This bill also repeals the 9 percent tax deduction for income attributable to “the sale, exchange, or other disposition of oil, natural gas, or any primary product thereof” (Sec. 301). The House passed the bill 221-189. Republicans voted 9-178 (Vote # 835, 8/4/07). NOTE: This bill was appended to the end of an omnibus bill H.R. 3221, which passed the House 241-172 and Gerlach voted in favor of H.R. 3221. Republicans voted 26-163 (Vote # 832, 8/4/07).

For a Second Time, Gerlach Voted Against Bill that Would Repeal Big Oil’s Tax Breaks

In 2008, Gerlach voted against H.R. 5351, a bill that would extend tax credits for wind facilities, closed loop and open loop biomass facilities, geothermal and solar facilities, small irrigation power facilities, landfill gas facilities, trash combustion facilities, and hydropower facilities for three years (Sec. 101). The bill creates new “clean renewable energy” bonds and designates a $2 billion limit on those bonds, which would be allocated to qualified projects of public power providers and cooperative electric companies (Sec. 104). It also prevents tax deductions to major integrated oil companies for income resulting from the domestic production of oil and gas (Sec. 301). The bill passed the House 236-182. Republicans voted 17-174 (Vote # 84, 2/27/08).

REAL CHANGE: Bob Roggio has pledged to not accept ANY campaign contributions from the oil and gas industries.

Bob Roggio

Jim Gerlach failed the voters, again

For Immediate Release
September 29, 2008
CONTACT: Liz Conroy
(610) 251-0550

8 years of Bush/Gerlach Policies Lead to Economic Collapse
House Fails to Pass Rescue Package

MALVERN, PA – The US House of Representatives failed to pass a financial relief bill today, plummeting the stock market to a record-setting low. Jim Gerlach took advantage of another opportunity to pander while failing to act.

“Jim Gerlach took a pass at confronting an enormous challenge and strengthening our economy,” said Roggio Campaign Manager Liz Conroy. “For 6 years, he has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with George Bush and supported the disastrous policies that have led to this massive meltdown. He has accepted almost $1.5 million from the Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate sectors, but claims to have the leadership and independence to solve this problem. Jim Gerlach has failed in his representation of middle class families who are struggling to protect their retirement and save for college. This was his chance to act. This was his opportunity to lead. This was his time to show some guts and find solutions and he foundered.”

After 8 years of the Bush/Gerlach policies that led to this enormous crisis, voters of the 6th district deserve new leaders who can bring a fresh perspective to Washington and work to fix our problems. We cannot trust those who got us into this problem to find a way out.

Bob Roggio

What is Jim Gerlach hiding from his Constituents

Let’s take a look at Jim Gerlach’s voting record and who sends him money.  One thing that I noticed is that Jim Gerlach has voted time and time again against Veterans.  Shame on him.

Proposed increased funding for Veterans’ programs and billions of dollars for Veterans’ services. [H Con Res 312, Vote #141, 3/13/08; SCR 21, Vote #377, 5/17/07; H Con Red 99, Vote #212, 3/29/07]

He is anti-choice. He also opposed an amendment to promote family planning that would reduce abortions. The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/06; HR 2764, Vote #533, 6/21/07]

  • Gerlach received the largest FEC fine in Pennsylvania history; He was forced to pay $120,000 for misreporting more than $2 million in campaign contributions. [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/12/07]
  • Voted to increase burden of pharmacy co-pays on military families. [HR 5112, Vote #139, 5/11/06]
  • Supported earmarked funds for catfish disease, grape research, and lobster research. [HR 2419, Vote #238, 5/1/08; HR 3161, Vote #809 and #810, 8/2/07; HR 3093, Vote #735, 7/26/07]
  • Gerlach on government waste: “I work everyday to eliminate…government waste in Washington.” But Gerlach’s taxpayer-funded mail was criticized for being “campaign literature,” and he was condemned for using “taxpayer money to support officeholders.” [The Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/8/06]
  • He voted against providing housing assistance, grants, and loans for working families suffering with foreclosure. [HR 5818, Vote #299, 5/8/08]
  • Voted against removing tax breaks for Big Oil. [HR 4297, Vote #121, 5/3/06]
  • Repeatedly voted against helping low income families heat their homes while energy costs were on the rise. [HR 3010, Vote #321, 6/24/05; HR 2863, Vote #668, 12/19/05; S 2320, Vote #66, 3/16/06; HR 4939, Vote #59, 3/16/06]
  • Taxpayers in Gerlach’s Congressional District will pay $1.8 billion for total Iraq war spending approved to date. For the same amount of money, we could provide 439,811 people with health care for one year. [National Priorities Project]
  • Voted to cut Medicaid and Medicare by billions of dollars, imposing large burdens on poor families and seniors. [S 1932, Vote #670, 12/19/05]
  • Despite the fact that Pennsylvania lost nearly 25% of its manufacturing jobs since NAFTA, Jim Gerlach voted for the passage of CAFTA in 2005. [HR 3045, Vote #443, 7/28/05; Public Citizen]
  • Before the CAFTA vote, Gerlach received an influx of Pro-CAFTA PAC money – $251,703 from Jan-Sept. 2005 – more than doubling the amount of money he received from such PACs in the past. [Public Citizen]
  • Voted to cut housing and emergency funds for hurricane victims, and opposed strengthening levees. [HR 1427, Vote #389, 5/22/07; HR 2206, Vote #333, 5/10/07; HR 4939, Melancon Amendment, Vote #51, 3/16/06]
  • Voted for a $70 billion tax cut bill that was called a “windfall for the rich” and designed to “benefit a sliver of the population that doesn’t need the help.” [HR 4297, Vote #135, 5/10/06; The Washington Post, 5/11/06]
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    Campaign Democrats Pennsylvania Politics


    Please be sure to visit the events page and the Candidate’s Website page. There have been additions to the Candidates’ website page.

    From Bob Roggio’s campaign

    We will be canvassing the Boyertown area THIS Saturday at 11 a.m. If you can give an hour or two of your time it would be greatly appreciated!

    Canvass of Boyertown
    Saturday, Sept. 13, starting at 11 a.m.
    Boyertown Community Park
    (near the pool in the parking lot)
    Knocking on doors handing out Bob Roggio for Congress literature

    Also, please mark your calendars for Sunday, Sept. 28 as Barack Obama’s Campaign for Change and Bob Roggio for Congress will be doing a MAJOR canvass around Berks County. More details to come!

    Thanks and see you soon!


    Dan Sauder
    Field Director – Berks/Lehigh Counties
    Bob Roggio for Congress
    610-898-1316 (W)
    610-898-1318 (F)
    610-736-3264 (C)

    See the Events page for further details.

    Campaign Candidate Congress Democrats Pennsylvania Politics

    We will advertise instead…

    This is interesting, “fear” is preventing a Philadelphia radio station, KYW-AM “news radio”, from airing this advertisement by the DCCC. In this case, money isn’t talking. It is fear that rules, unless maybe KYW-AM is getting some sort of “support” from the current representative of the PA 6th Congressional District. You know him as Republic Jim Gerlach.

    The Philadelphia area advertisement will have Jim Gerlach’s name instead of Robin Hayes.

    Vote Bob Roggio for PA 6th Congressional District. We need a change in Washington. It’s time for Bush supporter Jim Gerlach to retire from Congress and get a “real” job. Gerlach’s been living off the public money for way too long.

    Just look at the economy and the price of gasoline. Jim Gerlach supported Bush’s poor economic policies. Are you better off today then you were in 2000? Did you have more “discretionary” funds in 2000 then you do today? The price of oil is going to have a HUGE impact this winter so start thinking about which room in your house you want to heat because heating the whole house may break your household budget. A vegetarian diet might also become appealing since beans are cheaper than meat and you will need more money to heat your house and to put gasoline in your car, just to get to work.

    From the Daily Local

    Bob Roggio for Congress.

    Another little know fact about Jim Gerlach, he is one of the last Congressman to vote on ANY issue. He waits until he knows that his vote is “safe”. It’s a voting game that is played out in Washington DC all the time and Jim Gerlach is a master at this game. The real issue is exactly where does Jim Gerlach stand on anything? He’s all over the map on his voting record. He is spineless and has no real values or at least he isn’t sharing his real values with the voters.

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    Campaign Elections Pennsylvania

    Bob Roggio – PA 6th

    Dear Friends and Democrats,

    Allow me to introduce myself as I hope to work closely with all of you in the coming months. I was recently hired as the Berks/Lehigh County Field Director for Bob Roggio for Congress. I am privileged and honored to work for Bob whom I respect and admire personally as well as politically, and I have no doubt that after you get to know him too, if you have not already, that you will feel the same. Being born and raised in Berks County, continuing my education at RACC and Kutztown University and now being able to help elect a man to Congress that has a great vision for our community is a tremendous feeling. Ultimately, however, we cannot defeat incumbent, Washington insider Jim Gerlach without YOU.

    This Saturday, Bob will be spending the day here, as he already has dozens of times over the last few months, and I invite each of you to come out and get to know him at any of events listed below. There is also a very important fundraiser on Saturday night at the home of former PA State House candidate Russ Hummel. “Russ’ Roast for Roggio” will be the first campaign fundraiser in Berks, but one of the last opportunities to contribute before the critical June 30th finance reporting period.

    In addition, many exciting things will be coming to Berks County over the next few months, including; opening an office (very soon!) a dedicated portion of our website with a blog ( and much much more!

    I look forward to working with each of you on our way towards victory in November!


    Dan Sauder
    Field Director – Berks/Lehigh Counties
    Bob Roggio for Congress
    Cell # (610) 736-3264

    Saturday, June 28th Events:

    7 p.m. – 10 p.m. – Russ’ Roast for Roggio
    Details: June 30th is an important fundraising deadline for the campaign, please come out to meet Bob Roggio and hear him speak! We will also premiere Bob’s brand new campaign video! Very casual with Russ Hummel on the grill and drinks.
    Location: 538 Gregg Street
    Shillington, PA
    Cost: None – Suggested donation of $25 – Help make this event a success!
    More info: Call Dan Sauder at (610) 736-3264 or e-mail at

    Congress Democrats Government Republicans

    This is Music to My Ears

    The House Republicans are getting very nervous about the general elections. Within the past 3 months, two formerly solid Republican House seats were won by Democrats in a “Special Election”.


    Shellshocked House Republicans got warnings from leaders past and present Tuesday: Your party’s message isn’t good enough to prevent disaster in November, and neither is the NRCC’s money.

    The double shot of bad news had one veteran Republican House member worrying aloud that the party’s electoral woes – brought into sharp focus by Woody Jenkins’ loss to Don Cazayoux in Louisiana on Saturday – have the House Republican Conference splitting apart in “everybody for himself” mode.

    “There is an attitude that, ‘I better watch out for myself, because nobody else is going to do it,'” the member said. “There are all these different factions out there, everyone is sniping at each other, and we have no real plan. We have a lot of people fighting to be the captain of the lifeboat instead of everybody pulling together.”

    I’m certainly not surprised by the “everyone for himself” statement. For the past 12 years, the Republican members of Congress have been all about themselves and didn’t give a hoot about the American people. They had their key phrases; “patriotism, flag pins, stay the course, cut and run (I can still see Jean Schmidt making an fool out of herself in the House), terrorists, be afraid, socialized medicine etc…” while working with a “borrow and spend” mentality which has put American jobs in jeopardy, raised gas and food prices, and sent our national debt soaring.

    Now here’s a shocker for you… RNCC chairman, Tom Cole (R-OK) told its members that it doesn’t have enough money and that the members will need to raise their own money and run strong campaigns if they want to win in November.

    Cole, on the defensive in the wake of special election losses in Louisiana and Illinois, pointed his finger Tuesday at his Republican colleagues, telling them that they had been too stingy in helping fund party efforts. He also complained that the Republicans ran weak candidates in both Louisiana and Illinois – a charge Cole made despite the fact that, as NRCC chairman, he could have played a major role in choosing the party’s candidates if he hadn’t made the decision to stay out of GOP primaries.

    This is great news for PA CD 6 Democratic candidate, Bob Roggio. Jim Gerlach (R) will need to “work” for his campaign this year instead of relying on the RNCC to do his work for him.

    But Cole’s overall message was clear, said members who sat through the meeting: “If you’re not out doing your own work, and you’re waiting for the NRCC to come in at the last minute and save you, it ain’t gonna happen.” That’s how one lawmaker characterized Cole’s talk, adding that the NRCC is “not going to have the resources” to help all members “and Democrats will have a lot more money.”

    If the Republicans in Congress had listened to the American people instead of pandering to “K Street” lobbyists and big corporations, they wouldn’t have to be begging for money and votes. Regardless of who wins the White House in November, they will probably have to work with Democrats that will hold a strong majority in the House. Too bad, the criminals that currently occupy the White House will have already left office. Now, if we can only pull these criminals passports before they take off for Paraquay…

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    The Obama Phenomenon hits Berks County

    OK, I’ve been involved as a volunteer in campaigns for some time now, local state, and federal. Everything from township supervisor to president of the United States. I know when a candidate gets support, and I can sense the level of support, from disinterest to, well, passionately absorbed. I have to tell you that the Obama campaign, which has a small cadre of paid staffers in the little town of Reading PA (pop. 75,000?) has taken the region by surprise. The story is in the numbers. As was reported in these pages a few days ago, Berks County had about 3000 new Democratic registrants since the beginning of the year, while the Republicans have had 179. Well in less than a week, those numbers will increase by several thousand. Teams of enthusiastic volunteers from Berks County, under the direction of Obama staffers, are swarming out to all high traffic areas in the city and county and registering new and cross-over voters in droves. Yesterday, thanks to my wife, I had the grunt task of adding those new registrations to the Vote Builder data base. Folks, the two of us spent over 4 hours there, and barely made a dent in the pile. This man, and this campaign are combing through the under-story of the local political landscape to find tons of new registrants (folks who never bothered to care, from their early twenties to oldsters in their eighties), and party-switchers (about 10% of the registrations I handled). The story is plain and simple. No other candidate on the political scene in my memory has tapped into voter radar like Barack Obama. And these new registrants are being entered in to the state and national Democratic databases, under the Obama tag. Don’t think party regulars (read super delegates) aren’t taking notice. Another update: The Philadelphia campaign office has already exceeded its registration goals. Bob Roggio (candidate U.S. House of Rep. 6th Cong. District) do you know where your coattails are being made? Pollsters tapping Pennsylvania’s mood, do you understand why you will be way off mark in your opinion polling for this upcoming primary? (For the under-informed, pollsters contact likely voters… those who have voted often in several previous elections, and they don’t call cell phones, which I entered a lot of yesterday.). Hey Hillary… ‘a cold wind is gonna blow.