Newsletter | U.S. Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman
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Hello friends,


It’s Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman with another monthly update on our work in Washington, D.C. and back home in New Jersey. Before we really get into the details of the past month, I want to thank you for being such an active participant in our Democracy. At the beginning of every month, I send this newsletter out to and am always astonished at the amount of responses and feedback that I receive. Whether your comment are positive or critical of my policy positions and votes, I’m glad that you’re here. I’m honored to represent you regardless of how you feel about me personally, and I’m honored that you feel comfortable enough to be so open and honest with me. Together, as New Jerseyans, as Americans, we are taking on the challenges together and fighting for a more perfect union. 


State Of The Union
The State of the Union is an annual Presidential address to both chambers of Congress to lay out their vision for the coming year. It is always an opportunity to discover what the President’s legislative agenda and priorities will be and as a member of Congress, I believe it is my duty to my constituents to be attendance. Many of you wrote to me requesting that I protest Trump’s first State of the Union by not attending. I understand how you might have felt that I do not owe him respect, as he certainly does not honor and respect many factions the American people. I did attend the State of the Union, but decided to lead a silent protest and use this opportunity to highlight the life and legacy of Recy Taylor. I discussed this fully in an interview with the New Yorker, but I’ll further explain in this email to you.

I must admit, I never heard her name until Oprah Winfery’s Golden Globes speech. But after learning her story, it made me think about the transformative movement taking place around sexual harassment and assault. These movements are allowing so many brave women to come forward and share their truth to the world. However, it has not been lost on me that marginalize women have long spoken up, spoke out and have long been ignored — Recy Taylor’s story is the full embodiment of that.

So for the State of the Union, I gave other members of Congress ‘Recy’ pins so that we could amplify the voices of victims that we, ins some cases, chose not to hear. It was in conjunction with members wearing black to stand in solidarity and support of women. I did so because there’s always this ‘and us’ situation as it relates to black women, and that, when we focus on the issues of the day that involve discrimination or assault against women, we’re not immediately thought of in the context of that suffering.



I had the honor of having Rose Gunter as my guest to the State of the Union. She is the niece of Recy Tayor and was here caregiver until her death late last year. In addition to Rose representing the legacy of Recy Taylor, she represents the many communities that Trump continuously targets and attacks. The Huffington post had an incredibly honest story about what Rose’s presence truly represented at the State of the Union that I hope you’ll read here.




Trump Shutdown
It was the first time in our nation’s history that a government shutdown occurred while one party, the Republican party, was in control of the House, Senate, and the White House. While this shutdown was brief, Republicans have still failed to fully fund vital government programs, provide adequate relief to our natural disaster victims and community health centers, and provide our military service members the economic security they deserve. Congressional Republicans must abandon their efforts to govern on their own and bring Democrats to the table to put forth solutions that will have bipartisan support and compromise.

I voted no on the continuing resolution because it did nothing to address the priorities that are so critical to New Jerseyans and the American people. The deal that was agreed to by the Senate did not guarantee protections for Dreamers. We need bipartisan immigration reform and not the ransom note of demands from President Trump that are intended to shut out immigrants from coming to America who are not white. Without a full budget, the safety, security, and prosperity of American citizens are put at risk.

We need to be working on massive infrastructure investments to rebuild our transit systems, repair our roads, and building bridges for more opportunities. The American people are demanding higher wages and job opportunities and Congress has yet to provide legislation that permanently secures either of those. Congress cannot continue to run away from the legislative challenges of criminal justice reform, environmental protections, and gun safety. I am eager and ready to work with my Republican colleagues to tackle the hard issues and certainly hope that in 2018 they will allow Democrats to work with them. We cannot continue to shut out our fellow Americans from the Democratic process.



WASHINGTON, DC OFFICE
1535 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-5801
Fax: (202) 225-6025
EWING, NJ OFFICE
850 Bear Tavern Road Suite 201
Ewing, NJ 08628
Phone: (609) 883-0026
Fax: (609) 883-2093
 
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