The Tribune-Democrat: 12th District Incumbent Keith Rothfus Touts His Outreach Effort
U.S. Rep. Keith Rothfus, R-Sewickley, considers himself to have two main job requirements: providing constituent services and doing policy work.
In terms of connecting to the community, the freshman representative has held more than 60 “Coffee with Keith” events throughout the 12th Congressional District since taking office in January 2013. The gatherings have provided residents with chances to discuss issues with him in informal settings, such as Flood City Café, Press Bistro and Our Sons’ Restaurant in Johnstown.
Rothfus’ office has also resolved more than 900 cases for citizens, he said.
“Constituent services is all about being accessible and accountable,” said Rothfus, who is running against Democratic Party nominee Erin McClelland in this year’s general election.
Cambria County Republican Party Chairman Jim Orr complimented the congressman for his outreach effort, saying, “Keith is probably the most humble and hard-working congressional member I’ve ever met. He makes himself available to anybody who wants to talk.”
Legislatively, Rothfus has sponsored six bills, all of which are still in committee: Mutual Bank Choice and Continuity Act, Getting Government to Work Act, Congressional Pay for Performance Act, DATA Act, Satisfying Energy Needs and Saving the Environment Act, and Medicare Beneficiary Preservation of Choice Act.
He introduced an amendment to the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Act that prohibits paying bonuses to U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs senior executives in the wake of the death of six veterans at the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System.
Rothfus, who is listed as a rank-and-file Republican, according to GovTrack, is an opponent of the Affordable Care Act. He has also repeatedly spoken out against what he feels is the Environmental Protection Agency’s over-regulation of the coal industry.
“Our country faces great challenges – frozen incomes, rising prices, problems from a flawed health-care law and danger abroad,” Rothfus said.
“There is a better way. There’s a way forward. We in western Pennsylvania have a great opportunity to lead our entire nation in an economic recovery and create an America that is booming for every American – if Washington doesn’t stop us.”
He has often spoken out against expansion inside the nation’s capital and within its surrounding area, which is home to six of the country’s 10 wealthiest counties, according to a 2014 Forbes report.
“It’s fundamentally unfair that Washington grows rich at your expense,” Rothfus said.
Looking forward to a possible second term, Rothfus said, “Our new direction should focus on security, solutions to improve the economy and service. Let’s secure our borders and protect this country from the terrorists.
“Let’s rein in Washington bureaucrats. Let’s make our tax code fairer and simpler. Let’s stop the harmful effects of the president’s health care law and come up with health care reform that actually serves to lower costs and expand choice for people.
“Finally, let’s put the ‘serve’ back in public service. Those in public service are the employees of the American people. They must rediscover President (John) Kennedy’s immortal words, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.’”