MORRISTOWN –– Democrat John Arvanites today asked 11th Congressional District voters to end Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen’s “war on women” by unseating the nine-term Republican this Election Day.
“It is no secret Republicans are waging a war on women in New Jersey and nationally,” said Arvanites. “It is clear from Frelinghuysen’s voting record that he is a loyal lieutenant in the Republican assault on women’s rights.”
Arvanites, 45, a Certified Public Accountant and former Mayor of Roseland, is one of only three New Jersey congressional candidates to be endorsed this year by the National Organization for Women (NOW) for his progressive stance on women’s rights issues.
“Receiving NOW’s endorsement is a special honor for me,” Arvanites said. “As the proud father of two daughters, I am grateful to NOW for promoting women’s rights and equality. I am especially sensitive about the offensive stance that Republicans have toward women.”
“During Frelinghuysen’s 17 long years in office, Rodney has repeatedly voted with conservative Republicans to undermine women’s rights to equal pay, critical healthcare, and preventive medicine,” Arvanites said.
In May, for example, Frelinghuysen joined with conservative Republicans to obstruct a House vote on the Paycheck Fairness Act of 2012 that would have corrected salary inequity for millions of American women.
Frelinghuysen blocked a similar-pay equity measure in November 2010 and, in 2007, he actually voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, a House measure to close the pay-gap between men and women.
“In the 11th District, nearly 30-percent of the 57,500 women-only households live in poverty,” Arvanites said. “Women earn .77-cents on the dollar for the same work as men; African-American women, .68-cents; and Latinas, .59-cents. Women cannot afford to have Frelinghuysen represent them any longer.”
Besides the financial impact to women on Frelinghuysen’s watch, Arvanites criticized his opponent for repeatedly siding with the most extreme Republican factions to damage women’s access to preventive medicine and essential healthcare.
In recent years, Frelinghuysen has:
- Twice voted to support the Paul Ryan budget proposal, in 2011 and 2012, that threatened to eliminate federal money for primary healthcare for 2.9 million women by defunding Planned Parenthood.
- Refused to support a tougher Violence Against Women Act in May 2012 that would have provided essential remedies for victims of rape and sexual assault.
- Voted in May for the Prenatal Non-Discrimination Act, a thinly-disguised anti-choice measure that would have required doctors to quiz women on why they were seeking to terminate a pregnancy and give physicians broad discretion to refuse the procedure.
- Voted last October to amend the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to prohibit insurance coverage for abortions even in cases of rape and incest.
- Also voted last October for the “Protect Life Act” that would allow physicians “to exercise their conscience” and allow pregnant women to die in certain medical emergencies.
“Frelinghuysen claims he’s pro-choice. Clearly, he’s not,” Arvanites said. “His dreadful voting record on women’s issues makes our choice crystal clear on Election Day. It’s time for Frelinghuysen to go and for women in the 11th District to get the progressive representation they deserve in Washington D.C.”