Three former Chester County Republican Committee chairmen have endorsed U.S. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (D-Berks/Chester) for reelection.
Alan Novak, a political consultant, attorney Joseph “Skip” Brion, and William Lamb, a former state Supreme Court justice, told the Delaware Valley Journal they support Houlahan.
“She’s done an excellent, excellent job,” Lamb said. “I met with her after she was first elected and said to her, ‘You know you’ve got to understand the district that you’re in. And if you vote in lockstep with the Democrats you’re going to have a short tenure. You need to be as bipartisan as you can.’ She recognizes this is a purple district.”
“She has a great resume, everything from United States Air Force to teaching to running a business. She’s really done everything that I think she should have done and she deserves to be re-elected,” said Lamb.
Brion said, “My wife, Glenda, and I met Congresswoman Houlahan, on her invitation, a few years ago at a roundtable discussion. We found her to be open, honest, engaging, and interested in hearing our ideas and concerns. It was clear that she wanted to serve the people of our county. As time went on, we got to know her better and there was no question that she always had the county’s best interests in mind.”
Brion, a member of the SEPTA board, said he has been trying to get the Coatesville train station opened to help Coatesville residents and Houlahan backs him on that.
“In addition, the congresswoman is an engineer and businessperson herself, with a background in supply chains, who now advocates for our local small businesses from her seat on the Small Business Committee. Specifically, there are many local entrepreneurs whose businesses survived the pandemic because of the support the congresswoman helped to deliver. She continues to work as a bi-partisan congresswoman, and not just go along party lines.”
And Novak, who supported Houlahan in the last election, too, praised the congresswoman for her civility. Novak, who is also a former state GOP chair, said he approves of how Houlahan does her job and that she is accessible and has held nearly 70 town hall meetings.
“She works very hard behind the scenes to take a bill that has some issues and make it better,” he said. For example, she had language removed from a bill that would have hurt local banks by requiring they report $10,000 into or out of bank accounts to the IRS, he said.
He was not concerned that ProPublica listed Houlahan as voting 100 percent with Speaker Nancy Pelosi both this term and the previous term.
“I get that she votes with her leadership when she has to,” he said. But he said she votes with Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks), too.
“When Congress switches, and we know it will, she will be the one to try to get common sense legislation done,” said Novak.
Previously, Novak was critical of Republicans who backed Democrats, and knocked former state Treasurer Barbara Hafer for endorsing Ed Rendell for governor saying, “There’s a reason in America that we don’t have a Benedict Arnold holiday.”
Dr. Raffi Terzian, the current Chester County Republican chairman, strongly backs Guy Ciarrocchi, Houlahan’s opponent. Ciarrocchi, the former CEO of the Chester Chamber, had also served assistant federal prosecutor.
“The new Republican Party of Chester County is forward-thinking and we are united in our support of Guy Ciarrocchi,” said Terzian. “Guy has an outstanding record of service and leadership. He is focused on the issues that are important to all Chester County residents such as escalating crime, a faltering economy, and the marginalization of parents and families. He will advocate for common-sense solutions to these problems and for policies that empower individuals, families, and businesses.
“On the other hand, Chrissy Houlahan and the radical left use highly charged rhetoric to divide us and have embraced failed policies that hurt our community. There is no doubt that Chester County residents will be best served by electing Guy Ciarrocchi to represent us in Congress,” Terzian said.
“Today, I am spending the day with small businesses in the Reading area and in Kennett Square, too, as I’ve been endorsed by NFIB—the leading organization fighting for small businesses and their employees,” Ciarrocchi said. “What a contrast as Congresswoman Houlahan highlights endorsements from political insiders, government-contract lawyers, and lobbyists.
“She’s highlighting men who used their party positions to profit from lobbying and taxpayer-funded contracts. It makes one wonder: What additional insider-deals so that these former-party-profiteers would shill for Congresswoman Houlahan, who recently called Republicans ‘diseased’ and needing to be ‘cleansed,’” he said.
For her part, Houlahan, who was first elected in 2018, said, “When I first ran, I promised to represent and serve everybody in our purple community. I am honored to have Justice Lamb, Alan, and Skip — three distinguished Republican leaders who I have enjoyed getting to know — in my corner,” said Houlahan. “While we may not agree on every issue, they know that as a veteran, businesswoman, teacher, and mom, I work tirelessly with both parties to deliver sensible solutions that make things better. With their help, we will continue to build the inclusive coalition needed to not only win this race, but also to lower costs, support small businesses, and continue to be present and deliver for everybody in our community.”