Frank Pallone, Jr. (born October 30, 1951) is the U.S. Representative for New Jersey's 6th congressional district, serving since 1993. He is a member of the Democratic Party. He previously represented the 3rd district from 1988 to 1993.
Early life, education, and early political career
Pallone is a graduate of Middlebury College, The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and Rutgers School of Law-Camden. Prior to being elected to the House, Pallone was a member of the Long Branch city council from 1982 to 1988.
He was a member of the New Jersey Senate (the upper house of the New Jersey Legislature), from the 11th district, from 1984 to 1988. In 1983, he defeated incumbent Republican State Senator Brian T.
Kennedy 50%-49%. In 1987, he won re-election with 60% of the vote.
U.S. House of Representatives
In March 1988, incumbent U.S. Congressman James Howard (D-Spring Lake Heights) of New Jersey's 3rd congressional district died. In November, Pallone defeated Republican State Representative Joe Azzolina 52%-47%.
In 1990, he won re-election with 49% of the vote.
After redistricting, he decided to run in New Jersey's 6th congressional district. In the Democratic primary of 1992, he defeated State Representative Robert Smith 55%-37%. In the general election, he defeated Republican State Senator Joe Kyrillos 52%-45%. Since then, he won re-election with at least 60% in all but two elections (1998 and 2010). In 1998, he defeated Republican teacher Mike Ferguson 57%-40%.
Pallone was challenged by Republican nominee Anna C.
Little. Little is a former Monmouth County Freeholder and served as Mayor of Highlands, New Jersey in addition to working full-time as an attorney specializing in immigration law. On November 3, 2010, Pallone defeated Little by over 16,000 votes, 55% to 43% in what analysts considered a terrible year for Democrats. However, for the first time in his career, Pallone failed to carry his home county of Monmouth.
Pallone is a Progressive Caucus Member. He serves as Vice Chairman of the Native American Caucus, where he has worked on a bipartisan basis to protect the inherent sovereignty of tribal governments and promote the needs of Indian Country.
As a senior member of the House Resources Committee — the committee with jurisdiction over all matters regarding the relations of the United States with American Indians and Alaska Natives — he has been a defender of the sovereign status of Indian Tribal governments as independent from the United States.
He also serves as a co-chairman of the Congressional Caucus on Armenian Issues along with Congressman Mark Kirk (previously Joe Knollenberg) and was instrumental in garnering the support of 127 members (30%) of the U.S. House of Representatives for the Armenian Caucus. In 2002 he was awarded the Mkhitar Gosh Medal by the President of the Republic of Armenia.
In 2002, he was awarded India's third highest civilian award, the Padma Bhushan for his contributions as member of the India Caucus in the Congress.
He was one of the 31 who voted in the House to not count the electoral votes from Ohio in the 2004 United States presidential election.
Pallone received an "A" on the Drum Major Institute's 2005 Congressional Scorecard on middle-class issues. while the National Taxpayers Union has consistently given Pallone an "F" ranking on votes that affect taxes, spending, and debt.
Pallone has questioned the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on its update of flood plain maps in Monmouth County, specifically in the Bayshore area.
Pallone has introduced a bill to modify the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the U.S.'s most important set of fisheries regulations.
On October 3, 2008 Rep. Pallone voted in favor of the Troubled Asset Relief Program believing that the enumerated powers grant congress the authority to "purchase assets and equity from financial institutions in order to strengthen its financial sector."
Other political offices
In 2000, Pallone endorsed and strongly supported incumbent Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Victor V.
Scudiery over then Red Bank Mayor Edward McKenna, who had the support of Middlesex County Powerbroker/Pallone enemy John Lynch and South Jersey Powerbroker George Norcross. Scudiery was re-elected county chairman by a 2 to 1 margin.
In 2002, Pallone turned down an offer to replace embattled Sen. Bob Torricelli as the Democratic Nominee for US Senate by Democratic Party leaders. The slot eventually went to Sen. Frank Lautenberg who ended up winning the general election. In 2004-2005, Pallone considered a gubernatorial bid against embattled and unpopular Gov. Jim McGreevey but ended up supporting eventual party nominee winner, Gov. Jon Corzine.
Early in 2005, Pallone announced his intentions to seek the United States Senate position held at the time by Jon Corzine. Corzine won the Democratic nomination for Governor of New Jersey in June 2005, and Pallone was the first New Jersey politician to officially seek Corzine's senate seat. Pallone launched "Pallone for New Jersey to inform New Jersey citizens of his work in the House and his desire to be New Jersey's next Senator. In January 2006, Pallone announced his endorsement of Bob Menendez for Senate in the November 2006 Election, ending his bid for the seat.
In 2006, Pallone joined Gov. Jon Corzine in calling on Monmouth County Democratic Party Chairman Victor V. Scudiery to resign. Scudiery refused and was re-elected unopposed in 2006. Pallone was an early and strong endorser of Sen. Hillary Clinton in the 2008 Democratic Party primaries. Pallone traveled to New Hampshire to campaign for Clinton. Clinton eventually lost the primary to Sen. Barack Obama who went on to become President. Pallone also endorsed Frank Lautenberg over Congressman Rob Andrews, who was the candidate of South Jersey Powerbroker George Norcross. Pallone harshly attacked Andrews as the 'candidate of the political boss' - Lautenberg easily won that election with Pallone and Scudiery delivering an overwhelming majority for Lautenberg in Monmouth County.
In 2009, Pallone endorsed Ocean Township Board of Education Member Michael Beson for Monmouth County Freeholder over Middletown Committeeman Sean F. Byrnes, who had the support of Scudiery. Beson was crushed by a 4 to 1 margin at the April 2009 Democratic county convention. In June 2009, Pallone endorsed incumbent Edison Mayor Jun Choi over the candidate supported by Middlesex County and Edison Democratic Party leaders. Choi lost that election as did his entire city council slate, resulting in two strong losses for Pallone in his own district. In 2009, Pallone has been a strong supporter of Former Gov./Former Sen. Jon Corzine and a fierce critic of his Republican opponent, Gov. Chris Christie. Corzine lost the general election to Christie.
Pallone lives with his wife Sarah Hospodor-Pallone who was recently hired as Deputy Associate Administrator of Intergovernmental Relations at the EPA in Washington, DC and their three children who reside with them in Washington, DC.
December 14th, 2011