So declared Joe Leonardi as he announced his intention to challenge Paul Kanjorski for the 11th Congressional District. He spoke to a crowd of about 70 friends, family and supporters at the Convention Hall in Pittston Wednesday night. The event was attended by a few high profile local Republicans such as Prothonatary candidate Carolee Medico-Olenginski, W-B Area school board nominee Lynn Evans and activist Christine Katsock. Also attending were state committeeman Bill Lewis and county Young Republican chairman Ben Tilly. Plymouth council candidate Shelley Davis also said hello. It was disappointing none of the local media attended. But the alternative media was there. Myself and Bill Fitzpatrick of My Take covered the event.
He started by lamenting the fact that too many young people leave the area because of a lack of good opportunities. And later outlined a plan to contact 100 businesses in his first hundred days in office to show them the attractions of the area and try to convince them to set up shop here.
He then recounted the fact that he is a son of an immigrant and feels illegal immigration is a serious threat to the country. He touched on a few subjects that are not a direct responsibility of a Congressman such as setting up regional police forces and finding a better way to fund education.
Of course he took a few swipes. He was very adamant that the proposed inflatable dam is a bad idea and to make things happen you have to do more than believe.
He closed with a pledge on ethics. He promised never to hire a relative or steer a federal contract to a family member. He also vowed transparency, pledging to be open to the media and having regular town hall meetings.
He is just getting started and needs to add some detail to his positions. It was interesting what he didn't talk about. He never mentioned abortion, gay marriage or any other hot button social issue.
But we all know it all comes down to money. Kanjorski can raise $2 million dollars if needed. I talked with him after the speech and he said he had only talked with the NRCC once. If he can raise a decent amount of money such as $100,000 in the next quarter they may take notice of him.
Good luck Joe.
1 hour ago