If you are a Republican living in the Pennsylvania 13th Congressional District***and have been waiting for a fiscally conservative candidate to mount a serious challenge to the liberal Allyson Schwartz, this could be your year. Joe Rooney, a former U.S. Marine Corps fighter pilot, is the lone candidate seeking to take on Schwartz this November. His message of fiscal responsibility and American optimism will play well from Northeast Philly to Lansdale and King of Prussia.
As background, I went to my first Congressional meet ‘n greet in 2010 as a member of the Horsham Republican Committee (HRC). That year the MontCo and Philly GOP organizations entertained a slate of four or five candidates running to oppose Ms. Schwartz, a popular and well-financed liberal Democrat Congresswoman. I remember a long, long evening of seemingly endless, rambling monologues that failed to connect, let alone inspire. I knew that night Schwartz would have little trouble winning re-election.
But at this year’s meet ‘n greet Joe Rooney turned out to be a pleasant, refreshing surprise for the 2012 election cycle. His background, leadership, and values will play well to both moderates and conservatives concerned about the economic future of the country. His home page offers a hint to Mr. Rooney’s motivation in representing the people of the 13th:
“America is the most powerful nation in the world. However, we are in danger of damaging the future of this great nation by blatantly ignoring the ongoing fiscal crisis.”
It’s a message with which any hard-working head-of-household, retiree, unemployed worker or mortgage holder can empathize. National fiscal health results in a robust economy that begets more job opportunities, better wages and a safe, secure path into the future. And Rooney’s background is indicative of strong leadership that makes tough decisions and possesses the strength and commitment to see them through.
Joe served for twenty-three years as Marine Corps pilot of F-4 Phantoms and the F-18 Hornets, retiring as a Lt. Colonel. And as good a pilot as he was, Beth – his wife of 25 years - was one of the Navy’s first female pilots and just the second woman to graduate from the prestigious US Navy Test Pilot School!
In person, Joe Rooney is a direct, no-nonsense speaker with a genuine populist message. I found Joe to be personable, intelligent, and focused on the message he believes is important both to the people of Pennsylvania and to America’s future. He is also well aware of the difficulties he faces in trying to unseat a popular Congressional Democrat with a huge campaign war chest.
Joe Rooney is an American Optimist.
“The American economy can be the engine that drives the rest of the world out of the economic hole that currently exists.” - Joe Rooney
When Joe addressed our group, he referred to the view of America as that “Shining City on a Hill” - made popular by President Ronald Reagan – that portrays America as a land for Hope, Progress and Leadership. The above quote illustrates his view that America can lead the global economy to recovery so long as we can get our own fiscal house in order.
The Rooney’s live in Ardsley, PA and have five children, including a daughter currently serving in the US Navy aboard the USS KLAKRING and a son attending the US Air Force Academy, studying to become a fighter pilot. Joe, who graduated from Bishop McDevitt High School, flies and captains B737s for Delta Airlines.
The biggest obstacle to a successful run by Joe Rooney in the PA 13th is FINANCIAL! Allyson Schwartz is a deeply rooted, popular liberal Congresswoman, with a staggering financial advantage. So please take a good look at Joe Rooney’s message and consider contributing to – or volunteering for - the Joe Rooney for Congress campaign!
*** Important Note: The judicial decision that threw a wrench into Pennsylvania’s attempt to redraw state legislative voting districts DOES NOT affect the redistricting of national Congressional Districts. So the redrawn boundaries for the 13th Congressional District will be used for the 2012 primary and general elections. Click the link to see if your vote will be included in the new PA 13th.