Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-Wall Street) Is Undermining New Dem Majority Before It’s Even Been Sworn-In
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, consumer advocacy organization Allied Progress called attention to the voting record of Rep. Josh Gottheimer, a New Jersey Democrat who has voted more with President Donald Trump than he has with members of his own party in Congress. The group also promised to make the New Jersey Democrat famous for his work to sabotage progressive efforts to hold the Trump administration and its powerful special interest allies accountable.
In recent weeks, Gottheimer has sought to undermine incoming House Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Watters (D-CA) as she prepares to hold the Trump administration, big banks, predatory lenders, and financial scammers accountable. He also led an insurgency against Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and to dilute the power of the new Democratic majority.
“Josh Gottheimer deserves to be famous. Every progressive in New Jersey and across America should know that he votes with Trump more than he does his own Democratic colleagues. He is working overtime to undermine the new Democratic majority before it even takes office. Rather than standing with Trump and the powerful Wall Street special interests that have showered them both with millions in campaign cash, he should be standing up for consumers,” said Karl Frisch, executive director of Allied Progress.
He continued, “In the weeks ahead, it will be our mission to make certain progressives everywhere see Gottheimer as the face of efforts to sabotage the new majority’s efforts to hold the Trump administration and its powerful special interest allies accountable.”
Gottheimer Votes With Trump More Than Democrats
Since Coming To Congress, Gottheimer Has Voted With President Trump More Than Half The Time
“Since his 2017 swearing-in, Gottheimer, the Problem Solvers Caucus chair, has voted with Trump more than half the time, according to FiveThirtyEight.”[Ryan Grim, “WHO’S THE MYSTERY MAN BEHIND THE LATEST PELOSI PUTSCH? IT’S MARK PENN,” The Intercept, 11/27/18]
Gottheimer Defied His Constituents To Lead An Insurgency Against Nancy Pelosi And Dilute The Power Of The New Democratic Majority
Gottheimer Led A Group Of Moderate Democrats Who Held Nancy Pelosi’s Speakership Hostage To Demand “GOP-Friendly Rules”
Gottheimer “Led” Centrist Opposition Against Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi’s Bid For Speaker Of The House Until She Agreed To “Change House Rules To Make it Easier For Bipartisan Ideas To Be Considered.” “A group of moderate holdouts led by New Jersey Rep. Josh Gottheimer pledged to support Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi as speaker Wednesday after reaching an agreement to change House rules to make it easier for bipartisan ideas to be considered.” [Herb Jackson, “Group led by NJ House Democrat backs Pelosi for speaker after winning rules changes,” North Jersey Record, 11/28/18]
Gottheimer And Democratic Members Of The Problem Solvers Caucus Said They Would Only Vote For A Speaker Who Would Support Certain Rules For The House. “Gottheimer and eight other members of the bipartisan House Problem Solvers Caucus had said before the election that they would only vote for a speaker who agreed to what they were calling a ‘break the gridlock’ package of new rules.” Herb Jackson, “Group led by NJ House Democrat backs Pelosi for speaker after winning rules changes,” North Jersey Record, 11/28/18]
- Progressive Democrats Argued That Gottheimer And His Group Were Holding The Party “Hostage If We Don’t Accept Their GOP-Friendly Rules.” “9 Dems are choosing to hold the entire 220+ caucus hostage if we don’t accept their GOP-friendly rules that will hamstring healthcare efforts from the get-go. People sent us here to get things done, not “negotiate” with an admin that jails children and guts people’s healthcare.” [Tweet by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, 11/23/18, accessed 12/05/18]
- Other Critics Argued That Gottheimer Risked Distracting The New Democratic Majority With “A Bitter And Attention-Grabbing Internal Leadership Fight.” Critics of Gottheimer’s actions warned, “rather than […] focusing on a fresh agenda to present to Americans, House Democrats could be consumed with a bitter and attention-grabbing internal leadership fight.” [Eric Obernauer, “Gottheimer, Sherrill noncommittal on Pelosi,”New Jersey Herald, 11/20/18]
Grassroots Constituents Who Helped To Re-Elect Gottheimer “Reacted Angrily” To His Plot And “Felt Really Betrayed And Really Hurt” By It
Gottheimer’s Constituents Who Gave Him An Edge In His Re-Election “Reacted Angrily” To Gottheimer’s Initial Opposition To Nancy Pelosi. “[…] [G]rassroots groups that believe their efforts helped boost Rep. Josh Gottheimer’s re-election margin in North Jersey’s 5th District reacted angrily to the political hardball he and several colleagues on the moderate Problem Solvers Caucus played before supporting Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi’s quest to regain the gavel as speaker of the House.” [Herb Jackson, “They resisted Trump and pushed the blue wave. Now they’re pressuring Democrats,” North Jersey Record, 12/05/18]
Grassroots Organizations Who Helped Gottheimer By Canvassing 10,000 Doors Were “Upset” By His Opposition To Pelosi, And “Some Members Felt Ignored When They Called To Urge Gottheimer To Drop His Effort.” […] [L]eaders of grassroots groups that believe their canvassing and organizing helped Gottheimer increase his winning margin from 4 percentage points in 2016 to 12 points in 2018 said members were upset. Cathy Brienza, founder of Ridgewood JOLT, said her group knocked on 10,000 doors, and some members felt ignored when they called to urge Gottheimer to drop his effort.” [Herb Jackson, “They resisted Trump and pushed the blue wave. Now they’re pressuring Democrats,” North Jersey Record, 12/05/18]
- Progressive Activists “Worked For Gottheimer Even Though They Don’t Agree With Him On Every Issue,” Particularly That He Votes In Line With Trump. “Anna Wong of Paramus, a leader of NJ5 Indivisible who is also on the board of Women for Progress and northeast regional director of Action Together NJ, said progressives worked for Gottheimer even though they don’t agree with him on every issue. Of all the Democrats in the state delegation, Gottheimer voted most often for positions favored by Trump.” [Herb Jackson, “They resisted Trump and pushed the blue wave. Now they’re pressuring Democrats,” North Jersey Record, 12/05/18]
- “But Gottheimer built a voting record as the Democrat in New Jersey’s delegation most likely to vote with the Republicans, and he aggressively worked to be seen in the Republican parts of the district as trying to “claw back,” as he put it, federal funds for local needs such as firefighting equipment.” [Herb Jackson, “New Jersey Democrats rode a blue wave to the House, but how long will they stay?,” North Jersey Record, 11/09/18]
Gottheimer Sought to Undermine Incoming House Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Waters By Stacking the Committee with Wall Street-Friendly Members Like Himself
Gottheimer Cautioned That “Oversight” Couldn’t Be The Only Priority For The House Financial Services Committee and Cautioned Incoming Chair Waters About Going After The Banking Sector.
In November 2018, Gottheimer Cautioned Incoming House Financial Services Committee Chair Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) Against Going After The Banking Sector “Writ Large.” “Before the election, Waters jarred the financial industry by pledging at an event to do to banks ‘what you did to us,’ a moment captured on video that went viral. It’s a tone that’s not going to be echoed by a number of other Democrats on the committee. ‘We have to make sure we take care of folks, but I don’t think the answer is going after sectors writ large,’ [Rep. Josh] Gottheimer said. ‘That makes no sense.’” [Zachary Warmbrodt, “Maxine Waters wants to investigate Trump, but her party may resist,” Politico, 11/19/18]
- Gottheimer Also Cautioned That “Oversight” Couldn’t Be The Only Priority For the House Financial Services Committee. Gottheimer also “said the financial services panel ‘ought to be able to walk and chew gum.’ ‘There’s a good opportunity for more access to credit and housing reforms,’ he said. ‘Oversight’s important, but I just think we’ve got a broader responsibility.’” [Zachary Warmbrodt, “Maxine Waters wants to investigate Trump, but her party may resist,” Politico, 11/19/18]
Gottheimer Has Purportedly Touted The “Fundraising Potential” Of The House Financial Services Committee To Incoming House Members.
Huffington Post reported that Gottheimer “Has Been Encouraging Freshman Lawmakers” To Pursue Seats On The House Financial Services Committee, “Emphasizing The Fundraising Potential The Slots Offer His New Colleagues.” “Centrist Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) has been encouraging freshman lawmakers who have pledged their allegiance to the New Democrats’ cause to pursue seats on the Financial Services Committee, emphasizing the fundraising potential the slots offer his new colleagues, according to multiple sources familiar with his remarks. Gottheimer spokesman Matt Fried denied that the congressman brought up fundraising with other members, calling it ‘a lie.’ ‘He’d never say that,’ Fried said.” [Zach Carter, “These House Committees Could Make Or Break A Progressive Agenda,” Huffington Post, 11/15/18]
Though He Denies the Allegation, Gottheimer Reportedly Blocked A Progressive Member Of Congress From His Own State From A Seat On This Powerful Committee, Saying The Other Member Wasn’t “Wanted…”
Gottheimer Reportedly Blocked A Progressive Member of Congress From New Jersey From Joining The House Financial Services Committee Because “They Weren’t Wanted On The Committee” He Later Denied The Story. “A source with knowledge of the situation told The Intercept that Gottheimer was approached by a member of the New Jersey delegation with a more progressive profile, asking if Gottheimer would sponsor the lawmaker for the [House Financial Services Committee]. Gottheimer, according to the source, told the lawmaker that they weren’t wanted on the committee.” Gottheimer later denied the story and said he would love to have another member from New Jersey on the committee. [David Dayen, “HOUSE PROGRESSIVES ARE FACING AN UNEXPECTED PROBLEM IN THE QUEST FOR COMMITTEE POWER,” The Intercept, 11/21/18]
…While At The Same Time Recruiting Fellow Moderates To Join Him On The Financial Services Committee Dais.
Gottheimer Has Been Recruiting Fellow Moderate Democrats To Join Him On The House Financial Services Committee. “Josh Gottheimer, a New Democrat from New Jersey, has been recruiting several ideological allies to join the panel, according to numerous sources who preferred to remain anonymous, as they are not authorized to speak publicly about committee politics. Gottheimer won a congressional seat in 2016 and immediately got on the Financial Services Committee. He received nearly $1 million in donations from the securities and investment banking industries during the 2018 cycle, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.” [David Dayen, “HOUSE PROGRESSIVES ARE FACING AN UNEXPECTED PROBLEM IN THE QUEST FOR COMMITTEE POWER,” The Intercept, 11/21/18]
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