Brent Sonnek-Schmelz, the Republcian challenger to Congressman Frank Pallone in New Jersey’s 6th congressional district (parts of Middlesex and Monmouth counties) said Pallone’s arrogance and personal wealth have grown since he went to Washington 28 years ago, while Americans’ faith in Congress has hit rock bottom.
If elected, Sonnek-Schmelz says he will become a leading advocate for term limits for members of congress.
“The American people have lost faith in Congress because statesmen who believe in the art of compromise and a commitment to problem-solving are largely a thing of the past, and have been replaced with hyper-partisan, career politicians like Frank Pallone who believe they are entitled to re-election just for putting their name on the ballot every two years,” said Sonnek-Schmelz, an elected School Board Member in Atlantic Highlands. “After 28 years in Congress, Mr. Pallone’s arrogance – and his personal wealth – have grown, while Americans faith in Congress has hit rock bottom.”
In announcing his 12 point platform on issues including the economy, immigration, the first and second amendments, the war on terror, veterans affairs, the environmnet and marriage equality, the Republican noted that Pallone’s web page offers no positions on issues.
Sonnek-Schmelz says he will be an independent thinking member of congress and “never become the predictable, partisan rubberstamp that Pallone has become in Washington.” He offers his campaign platform as a demonstration of his independence
- Growing the economy by streamlining regulations that stifle job creation, cutting taxes, providing incentives for entrepreneurs to invest and take risks, and a focusing on job retraining for those left behind by a changing economy.
- Enacting term limits and ridding the system of career politicians like Frank Pallone in both parties.
- A formal declaration of war against ISIS as opposed to open-ended military conflicts without a coherent strategy or end game.
- A renewed commitment to our veterans and their mental and physical health when they return home, and a reinvestment in the military to confront growing threats like Russia and Iran.
- Fixing the immigration mess with comprehensive reforms that are fair, but tough. Securing the border and providing a rigorous path to citizenship for illegal immigrants who are willing to get to the back of the line, stay out of trouble, learn English and pay back taxes.
- Preserving Social Security and Medicare, reinstating the COLA and Obamacare-related cuts to Medicare, as well as advancing reforms like an increase in the retirement age for younger workers to help make the system solvent long-term.
- Dedicating ourselves to a clean and healthy environment, reducing reliance on fossil fuels and protecting our oceans and waterways.
- Confronting the heroin and opioid addiction crisis plaguing our communities.
- Focus on constituent service and outreach, and establish a congressional office that listens to and is accountable to residents, and treats people with respect.
- Providing educational opportunity to students and parents – regardless of their zip code – so they can receive a world-class education.
- Defend the constitutional right to free speech – politically correct or not – and ensure that law-abiding Americans are able to keep and bear arms, while being willing to find common ground on legislation for universal background checks.
- Taking a leadership role in moving the Republican Party beyond its antiquated stance on same-sex marriage, and reaching out to minorities who are currently ignored by the Republican Party and taken for granted by the Democratic Party.
“Ideas matter, substance matters and being willing to color outside the lines matters,” said Sonnek-Schmelz. “In Congress, I would be an independent voice focused on building a better, more prosperous America for every citizen regardless of their gender, their color, their ethnicity or their place of birth. Frank Pallone has been in Congress since the 1980’s and things are getting worse, not better. Releasing this platform today is about showing people I am more than just the alternative to Frank Pallone’s status quo, but also someone with the fresh ideas and new energy that our country so badly needs today.”