I FISH, I VOTE
These are important mid-term elections coming up on Tuesday, November 4th – all 435 seats in the United States House of Representatives and 33 of the 100 seats in the United States Senate are being contested. At the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA), we are not getting involved in every single race – but instead, we are endorsing candidates for this Tuesday who are either current friends of the RFA, or folks we believe will be friends in the future.
RFA is not a partisan organization; but over the past few years, we’ve watched as our nation’s hardcore saltwater sportsmen have been continually denied access by radical preservationism – a federal agenda which has led to a broken and fatally flawed fisheries management system, most of which is not perpetuated by science but by ideology.
Eight years ago, our nation’s federal fisheries law was up for reauthorization in the 109th Congress. Hard to believe but in 2006 when the Magnuson Stevens Act was being debated in Washington DC, it was a similar political climate on Capitol Hill to what we have now in the 113th Congress, with the insanity of mid-term elections and plenty of behind the scenes horse-trading.
We’ve been here before; which is why I believe that the balance of power needed in the U.S. Congress to start 2015 must be equal to or greater than the anti-angler sentiment now coming from inside the current administration. Too many of the Environmental Defense Fund and Pew Environment Group extremists have taken up shop in the White House over the past 6-1/2 years, that the only way to truly help protect angler interests within the Magnuson Stevens Act is by electing the right people on Tuesday, November 4th.
With that said, the following candidates for the United States House of Representatives and U.S. Senate are ones which the RFA believes can help us tackle the important fisheries issues moving forward. As per our mission, we don’t support candidates based on their views on healthcare or marriage equality or even gun control. But when it comes time for you to decide at the polls on Tuesday, if your right to open public access on healthy, sustainable fisheries is important enough to you, RFA believes these Mid Term Election candidates can help saltwater anglers nationwide in the 114th Congress.
In Alaska, RFA supports Dan Sullivan.
In the most hotly contested race of the Senate election, RFA’s board of directors voted unanimously at their annual meeting in Fort Lauderdale to initiate change in the Senate Commerce committee; Donofrio told the board that Sen. Begich has had 6 years to fix Magnuson, and with no new reauthorization bill in place at his committee today it’s unlikely anything good will come about without fresh leadership.
RFA is also proud to endorse the following for U.S. Senate:
Georgia, David Perdue.
Louisiana, Rob Maness
New Jersey, Cory Booker*
North Carolina, Thom Tillis
South Carolina, Tim Scott*
(*Members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation)
US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
In New York’s 1st Congressional District, RFA has endorsed Lee Zeldin.
An outstanding state senator in New York, Lee Zeldin has been a huge advocate for recreational fishermen in New York and would be a tireless champion for angler rights in Washington DC if elected Congressman from Long Island’s East End; could be a tremendous addition to the House Natural Resources Committee in this closely watched race.
RFA is also proud to endorse the following for U.S. House of Representatives:
Alaska, Don Young**
Florida, 2nd District, Steve Southerland**
Florida, 7th District, John Mica
Florida, 26th District, Carlos Curbelo
California, 50th District, Duncan Hunter
Louisiana, 4th District, John Fleming**
New Jersey, 2nd District, Frank LoBiondo
New Jersey, 3rd District, Tom MacArthur
New Jersey, 4th District, Chris Smith
New Jersey, 6th District, Frank Pallone**
New York, 11th District, Michael Grimm
North Carolina, 3rd District, Walter Jones**
North Carolina, 7th District, David Rouzer
South Carolina, 1st District, Mark Sanford
South Carolina, 3rd District, Jeff Duncan**
South Carolina, 4th District, Trey Gowdy
Utah, 1st District, Rob Bishop**
(**Members of the House Natural Resources Committee)
The Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) is a non-partisan, not-for-profit political action organization that represents recreational fishermen and the recreational fishing industry on marine fisheries issues. As a 501c4 organization, the RFA is legally allowed to provide candidate-related information to members, endorse specific candidates, urge the election or defeat of a particular candidate, and encourage contributions to a candidate. That’s what makes the RFA unique as an organization, with the stated mission since 1996 “to safeguard the rights of saltwater anglers, protect marine, boat and tackle industry jobs, and ensure the long-term sustainability of our Nation’s saltwater fisheries.”