Please take a moment to read the below editorial from the Staten Island Advance on why they are enthusiastically endorsing Congressman Dan Donovan for reelection.
For too long, Staten Island’s congressional seat was a national laughingstock. The well-documented controversies, which need no reiterating here, made the office a punchline, and cast all of Staten Island in a bad light.
Under Rep. Daniel Donovan (R-Staten Island/Brooklyn), however, that stain has been removed.
Since coming into office in a special election in May of 2015, Donovan has served with class and dignity, and has again focused our congressional seat solely on serving the people. There has been no drama. There have been no blowups with fellow lawmakers.
For that alone Donovan might be worthy of re-election in his battle against Democrat Richard Reichard. But Donovan has also done the job for his constituents, and for that reason the Advance enthusiastically endorses Donovan to serve us again in Washington.
It starts with Donovan’s position on the House Homeland Security Committee, where he chairs the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications. That perch puts Donovan on the front lines when it comes to anti-terrorism issues and response to natural disasters.
It’s an ideal spot for a borough that’s still suffering the effects of Hurricane Sandy, and where the echoes of 9/11 are still strong.
Donovan was a stalwart supporter of the successful reauthorization of the James L. Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, which will allow 9/11 first responders to receive the health care benefits they deserve long into the future. To have left these American heroes without care would have been criminal. Donovan was among those who ensured that that would not happen.
Donovan also stood tall in support of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act. Known as JASTA, the law will in effect permit families to sue Saudi Arabia in connection with the 9/11 attacks. It’s not known how that legal action will turn out, but 9/11 families deserved to have their day in court. Donovan rightly voted for the legislation as well as for the successful override of President Barack Obama’s veto.
The House also passed Donovan bills that would protect transit and cyber infrastructure from terror attacks. He got a bill passed to permanently extend the Securing the Cities program, providing New York City and others with training and equipment to detect nuclear and radioactive materials.
Donovan has also been an advocate for Sandy victims, including supporting a change in flood maps that would have wrongly put thousands more Staten Island homes and businesses in flood zones, and would have cost residents additional money for insurance.
Donovan got passed the Flood Insurance Mitigation and Policyholder Protection Act. And, along with Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), he sponsored the Flood Insurance Transparency and Accountability Act of 2015.
Donovan, a former district attorney here, has also been part of the solution when it comes to our heroin and painkiller epidemic. He introduced a bill aimed at stopping the ability of drug dealers to lace their product with deadly fentanyl, and worked with local lawmakers in a push to get millions in federal grants for non-profits fighting the scourge of heroin and opioid addiction. The Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Reduction Act passed the House with his support.
We could go on, but the bottom line is this: Donovan has taken care of business. And in this age of political division, he has been no ideologue. Donovan bucked his own party when he called for the GOP-led Senate to hold confirmation hearings on Judge Merrick Garland, whom Obama has nominated to the Supreme Court. That nomination remains stalled.
Donovan has also backed Donald Trump in this year’s presidential election. And while he can support whomever he wants, it puzzles us as to how Donovan, who advocated so strongly for the rights of domestic violence victims when D.A., could back a candidate who has spoken so disparagingly of women.
As for Donovan’s opponent, Reichard deserves credit for getting in the arena in 2016, a year when no other candidate has gone up against an incumbent on Staten Island in this general election.
A longtime political activist here, Reichard comes to the race as a true believer in his issues. There is no agenda here except what Reichard thinks is best for the country. You’re free to agree or not, but Reichard’s heart is in the right place. He knew what he was getting into when he decided to square up against the popular and well-funded Donovan. Bravo to him for taking on the race.
But our choice is clear: Donovan for Congress.