In an interview with Newsday editors and reporters on Monday, the all-but-official Republican Congressional candidate Randy Altschuler reiterated his criticism of Rep. Tim Bishop for voting most of the time with Democrats in the House. As quoted in an analysis of his rhetorical strategy, Altschuler said he wouldn’t think it a good record if he voted at that rate with the GOP in his first term, and spoke of negotiation and compromise in Congress.
Below, for your consideration and dissection, is posted the full text of a response we received Monday night from Robert Pierce, spokesman for Bishop, on both points as the campaign volley escalates even in advance of the June 26 Republican primary from which George Demos dropped out too late for his name to be removed from the ballot. Citations of sources for Bishop's statements were emailed to us and will later be included below the statement.
"On Congressman Bishop’s voting record:
Congressman Bishop puts middle class families in Suffolk County first, and his votes reflect that. Democrats are the minority in the House, and the Congressman only gets to vote on what the House GOP leadership puts forward. When the House GOP puts forward a budget that increases taxes on the middle class while protecting tax breaks for oil companies, Congressman Bishop votes against the House GOP.
Similarly when the House GOP puts forward a continuing resolution that would result in the layoff of a thousand of his constituents at Brookhaven National Lab, Congressman Bishop votes against it. For the record, Randy Altschuler indicated he would have voted for both. When the House GOP puts something up for a vote that’s good for middle class families, he’ll vote for it. For example, Congressman Bishop voted for the Republican bill to prevent an increase in the student loan interest rate in an effort to break the partisan gridlock on the issue.
"On Randy pretending to be a moderate:
Outsourcer Randy Altschuler pretending to be a moderate doesn’t pass the laugh test. This is a guy who will say or do anything to try to get elected. He’s been a registered member of the Green Party, he tried to run as a liberal Republican in New Jersey, he ran as a Tea Party Republican in 2010 and in this election and now he’s going to try to be a moderate? Moderates don’t support a budget that gives billionaires a handout while slashing programs for the middle class. Moderates don’t court and brag about Tea Party support. Moderates don’t say they “love” [Congressman] Paul Ryan.
I would do anything to be a fly on the wall of the local 9/12 Project the next time he speaks there. I wonder if he tells them that he’s really a Tea Party loyalist telling the press he’s a moderate. At some point Randy has to show some respect for the people he hopes to represent and come clean to them with respect to where he really stands.
As far as Randy’s move to run away from the Republican Party -- It takes a particularly cynical politician to cash checks from the Republican Party and Republican leadership one day, and then campaign against them the next.
Links from the Bishop camp: