Rail Funding Lobbying - Blog 2

​The next step in my quest to secure funding for Amtrak was to learn about my representatives. A constituent of the 1st district of New Jersey, I am represented in the federal government by Representative Rob Andrews, Senator Robert Menendez, and Senator Frank Lautenberg. While all have been in support of railroads in the past, Sen. Lautenberg is the national railroad advocate (which greatly helps my cause).

Lautenberg, the chair of the Senate's Surface Transportation subcommittee, has always been in favor of railroad transportation throughout the United States. In fact, for his efforts to support railroads, the 
Secaucus Junction train station (a large transfer station serving three quarters of all NJ Transit trains) was renamed the "Frank R. Lautenberg Secaucus Junction Station." Lautenberg's focus on railroads comes partly from his background, since his immigrant family often traveled on trains, but also comes from his work as Executive Commissioner of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. His efforts to support railroads are widely supported, since many North Jersey and Central Jersey residents use NJ Transit to commute to work in New York City. Overall, it will be easy to get Senator Lautenberg to support Amtrak Funding.

Senator Menendez, while not an outspoken rail advocate, does support railroads. He has voted in favor of Amtrak in every rail-based election since his inauguration. While this support often comes from pressure by Sen. Lautenberg, it will still be easy to get him to support rail funding.

Lastly, Rep. Rob Andrews has been a partial railroad advocate. While he personally wants to support railroads, many South Jersey residents don't. This is most likely the result of a lack railroad transportation in South Jersey (with only the PATCO, Atlantic City Line, and River Line). However, Rep. Andrews has been supporting the proposed Camden-Glassboro line. If the state bill passes, he can certainly support an Amtrak bill without any negative campaigning from his constituents.

Overall, my representatives will be easy to work with and will hopefully support my efforts to increase rail funding.