Paul D. Tonko

Paul D. Tonko Welcome! This page is moderated to support family-friendly discussion. It is not a public forum. Vulgarity, bigotry, bullying or political campaigning may be removed & users may be prevented from future posting.

See "Biography" for full site guidelines. PAGE GUIDELINES The purpose of this page is for U.S. Representative Paul D. Tonko to communicate with the citizens of the 20th Congressional District of New York regarding matters of federal policy. Please note that, while comments are welcomed, this is a moderated online discussion site and not a public forum. Comments posted to this page will be monitored and must comply with Facebook policy and these terms of use. Comments that (i) are unrelated to the purpose of this page or are not topically related to the specifics of the posting; (ii) contain fighting words, graphic or gratuitous violence, vulgar language, profanity, nudity, obscene or indecent language or sexual content, or false representations of fact; (iii) promote or incite illegal or fraudulent transactions or activities; (iv) threaten, intimidate, harass, or defame any person or organization; (v) otherwise violate Facebook’s terms of use, such as hate speech; (vi) constitute “spam,” such as content that appears to be from internet bots or repetitive, copy-paste statements; (vii) are commercial in nature, such as advertising, promotion, or endorsement of services or products, or solicitation of funds; (viii) contain personally identifiable information about another individual; (ix) misrepresent the commenter’s identity or affiliation; (x) contain links to any other website; and/or (xi) constitute campaign-related communications, electioneering, or fundraising efforts may be removed. Repeated violations of this policy may result in the inability of the author to comment on future posts. BIOGRAPHY Congressman Paul Tonko is a sixth term member of the United States House of Representatives. He currently represents New York’s 20th Congressional District, including the cities of Albany, Schenectady, Troy, Saratoga Springs and his hometown of Amsterdam. Paul has been a champion for the middle class, job creation, economic opportunity, providing senior citizens the opportunity to retire with dignity and the mental health community throughout his career. For the 115th Congress, Paul was named Ranking Member of the Energy & Commerce Subcommittee on the Environment. The Energy and Commerce Committee is the oldest standing committee in the House. First created in December of 1795, the committee has jurisdiction over national energy policy, public and mental health policy and regulation of interstate and foreign commerce, giving it the broadest jurisdiction of any authorizing committee in the House. Paul was the first upstate New York Democratic member to serve on this committee since Leo O'Brien, who resigned the post in October 1966. Previously, Paul has served on the Science, Space and Technology Committee, Natural Resources Committee, Budget Committee and Education and Workforce Committee. He continues to fight to bring clean energy jobs to the Capital Region to ensure it maintains its status as one of the fastest growing clean technology hubs in the country. Paul believes in the power of America’s middle and working class families and is fighting to ensure the American Dream stays within reach for all who work hard and play by the rules. Building on his work in the New York State Assembly, where he fought for one of the nation’s strongest mental health parity laws, known as Timothy’s Law, Paul continues to promote mental health parity at the federal level and serves as a Co-Chair of the Mental Health Caucus. As a former Member of the Budget Committee, Paul offered the lead amendment to the Ryan Budget to protect Medicare and was instrumental in fighting to protect the program from ending. Prior to joining Congress, Paul was the President and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. Before that, he served in the New York State Assembly for 25 years, 15 of which he was the Chair of the Assembly Energy Committee. At the age of 26, Paul was the youngest person in the history of Montgomery County to be elected to the County’s Board of Supervisors, which he chaired until 1981. Paul graduated from Clarkson University with a degree in mechanical and industrial engineering. He is a lifelong resident of the city of Amsterdam, New York.

01/28/2021

Frances G. Tonko, 99, of Princeton Street, Amsterdam, NY died very peacefully on Sunday, January 24, 2021, at the River Ridge Living Center in Amsterdam, New York.

Frances was born on April 16, 1921. She was the daughter of Boleslaw and Karolyna Bik Grajewski. She was a 1937 Wilbur H. Lynch High School graduate. She later contin ued her Post Graduate studies. On June 21, 1947, she was united in marriage to Stanley C. Tonko. They shared 68 years of married life together. Stanley died on June 28, 2015.

Frances had been employed by the Selective Service System and later worked for the Amsterdam Insurance Agency in Amsterdam, NY until her retirement in 1976.

Frances was a lifelong Greater Amsterdam area resident. She was a member of St. Stanislaus Church and the Ladies Rosary Society; St. Mary’s Club 60 and a past member of the Montgomery County Women’s Democratic Club. She was appreciated as an energetic campaigner.

Frances had been recognized in the past by former Governor Mario Cuomo as “New York Blood Donor of the Year”. She took great pride in her vegetable and flower gardens. She was a great baker and cook. There were great demands for her delicious pierogi, lasagna, babka bread, and lemon meringue pie. Frances was an avid lover of animals including her own Victor and Vanessa.

Fran’s family offers thanks for the compassionate care provided by her medical staff and healthcare workers whose efforts filled her life with dignity and hope.

01/25/2021

Congressman Tonko’s mother Fran passed away late last night. The Tonko family is grateful to everyone who has offered prayers and messages of warmth and support at this difficult time. We ask for patience and privacy as they grieve. -Staff

At the Inauguration, President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris offered messages and a vision that was solemn ...
01/24/2021
Marking a new & hopeful chapter for America

At the Inauguration, President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris offered messages and a vision that was solemn but hopeful, & both bold and urgent.

Read my newsletter for more on their historic inauguration:

After a bruising months-long campaign at the hands of some of America’s most powerful politicians, this week our democracy had its day. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were sworn in peacefully, just two weeks after the deadly attacks on our Capitol and our republic by supporters of the outgoing presid...

The Biden Administration's swift action to deliver economic relief and tackle hunger is vital to supporting our most har...
01/22/2021
Biden to sign two executive orders on economic relief, worker protections

The Biden Administration's swift action to deliver economic relief and tackle hunger is vital to supporting our most hard-hit communities.

Congress must follow-up with legislation that backs these measures.

Biden has signed a number of executive orders to roll back Trump-era policies, as well as address the Covid-19 pandemic.

01/22/2021

Good news! President Biden has ended America’s cruel and pointless Muslim ban.

Encouraging to see as we work to restore the values of our nation.

We will do what it takes to root out hate & discrimination as we continue to build a more perfect union, and we’ll do it together.

The COVID measures signed by President Biden today are grounded in science & prioritize public health.These provisions a...
01/21/2021
Biden unveils Covid-19 plan based on 'science not politics' as he signs new initiatives

The COVID measures signed by President Biden today are grounded in science & prioritize public health.

These provisions are the first of many steps we must take to establish a coordinated nation-wide effort to beat this crisis.

President Joe Biden's first full day in office on Thursday focused on rolling out his national strategy to get the coronavirus pandemic under control and signing several executive actions, including ramping up vaccination supplies and requiring international travelers to provide proof of a negative....

In November 2020, the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Agreement. Yesterday Joe Biden brought us back, making a powerful sta...
01/21/2021

In November 2020, the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Agreement. Yesterday Joe Biden brought us back, making a powerful statement that American leadership has returned.

We must and will work together to build a clean, more sustainable future for all.

Great news. We’re back in. #ActOnClimate

01/21/2021

Dr. Fauci’s announcement that America will restore our place in the World Health Organization is a great sign—and not the first—that this administration is putting science and public health ahead of politics. 👏🏻👏🏻

01/20/2021
Congratulations President Biden and Vice President Harris!

Please join me in congratulating President Biden & Vice President Harris on their historic election! Together we will build our nation back better using sound science, strong climate action & job creation. Let’s get to work to make our clean energy goals a reality!

Today, we find strength and conviction in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. "True peace is not merely the absence ...
01/18/2021

Today, we find strength and conviction in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice."

We need a lifeline strong enough to pull us out of this dark winter. The new Biden rescue plan gets it done. Read my lat...
01/17/2021
Advancing a COVID lifeline for our economy & the American people

We need a lifeline strong enough to pull us out of this dark winter.

The new Biden rescue plan gets it done. Read my latest newsletter for more on why Congress must pass this package without delay:

While we continue to grapple with the consequence and continued fallout of the January 6 attack on the Capitol, our work to confront the devastating effects of this COVID crisis remains incomplete. On Tuesday, we set another unfathomable record of 4,327 deaths in one day due to COVID, the highest si...

01/14/2021

GREAT NEWS! The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is opening up more access to buprenorphine, a cutting-edge addiction treatment that will save lives and help turn the corner on America's opioid epidemic. I've led the push for Congress to do this #XtheXwaiver with my MAT Act—tons of work remains but this is 💯

Our House came together across the partisan divide today to send articles of impeachment to the Senate. They must act to...
01/13/2021
Tonko Calls on Senate to Remove Trump Immediately for Deadly Insurrection

Our House came together across the partisan divide today to send articles of impeachment to the Senate. They must act to remove Donald Trump from office now.

WASHINGTON—Congressman Paul D. Tonko released the following statement today following a strong bipartisan vote in the House to advance H.Res. 24, Impeaching Donald John Trump, President of the United States, for high crimes and misdemeanors:

01/13/2021

In America, no one is above the law. You don’t get to incite acts of terrorism against our government or our people and expect not to face consequences.

Donald Trump incited a riot and directed it at the seat of our government. His desperate and violent attempt to end our democracy will fail, but his attempt exposed him as a traitor and resulted in the injury and death of Americans he has sworn to defend. He remains a clear and present danger every day he remains in office.

Vice President Pence and the remaining Cabinet Members have the Constitutional authority and, as of tonight’s vote, bipartisan direction from Congress to remove Trump from office.

For the safety of the American people, and for the sake of our republic and all who have fought and died to protect it, they must exercise this power and remove him now. And if the Vice President and Cabinet fail to take this necessary step, my colleagues and I will not hesitate to exercise our Constitutional authority in the House tomorrow and impeach the President.

In the last 24 hours we have learned that several of my Democratic colleagues—including older members with past cancer d...
01/12/2021
Three lawmakers test positive for Covid after Capitol lockdown

In the last 24 hours we have learned that several of my Democratic colleagues—including older members with past cancer diagnoses and other high-risk factors—tested positive for COVID. I hope you will join me in wishing everyone affected a swift and full recovery.

This minor outbreak comes after we were forced into close contact with Republicans who repeatedly refused to wear masks during the assault on the Capitol. Their reckless behavior not only continues to send the wrong signals to the country in the middle of a deadly pandemic, it also put countless members and staff directly in harm’s way.

During the chaotic events of January 6th, I was in close contact with at least one of these members.

While I am pleased to report that I recently tested negative for COVID and am currently experiencing no symptoms, after consulting with the Office of the Attending Physician and out of an abundance of caution, I plan to cast my votes this week via proxy.

I remain absolutely committed to removing President Trump from office immediately and taking whatever steps are necessary to hold every person who contributed to this deadly act of treason accountable.

Reps. Pramila Jayapal, Bonnie Watson Coleman and Brad Schneider contracted Covid-19 after sheltering with Republicans who didn't wear masks.

01/10/2021

U.S. Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood has died by suicide after defending our Capitol—the 2nd USCP death in as many days. ��My condolences to his fellow officers, friends & loved ones. ��This attack weighs heavy on many hearts. If you are struggling, please reach out.

The violent assault on January 6 was the result of years of Donald Trump fanning the flames of conspiracy & division. Th...
01/10/2021
Upholding my sworn oath to defend the Constitution

The violent assault on January 6 was the result of years of Donald Trump fanning the flames of conspiracy & division. The most important action we can take to defend our republic is to remove him from office NOW. Read my latest newsletter below for more:

This week, as Congress gathered to undertake one of our most solemn duties—counting electoral votes and confirming the will of the people in the Presidential election—a violent mob broke through the doors of the U.S. Capitol.

01/08/2021

Donald Trump incited a riot in our U.S. Capitol that killed five people, injured countless others and struck at the heart of our republic. He is a clear and present danger every day he remains in power and must be removed. Now.

The House & Senate need to do this TODAY.

01/08/2021

I am heartbroken by reports tonight that a Capitol Police officer who was injured during the recent attacks on our U.S. Capitol has died.

My deepest condolences go out to the officer’s family. The people responsible for these attacks must face justice. This must never happen again.

UPDATE: Capitol Police have shared widely that these reports were not correct, the officer is alive but was very seriously injured. The chief has has requested privacy for the family. If additional information is released tonight or in the coming days, this post will be updated accordingly. -Staff

UPDATE #2: we regret to share the sad news that Officer Brian Sicknick of the U.S. Capitol Police has died. Official public statement here: https://twitter.com/scottwongdc/status/1347406129970753536?s=21 -Staff

01/07/2021

Today, as Congress gathered to undertake one of its most solemn duties—counting electoral votes and confirming the will of the people in the Presidential election—a violent and seditious mob urged on by the current President of the United States descended on the U.S. Capitol.

As the crowd forced its way inside, the doors to our House chamber were locked and my colleagues and I were asked to hide under chairs to prevent being struck by stray bullets. When we were able to evacuate the House gallery, we did so by jumping over rows of chairs while wearing gas masks as officers barricaded the doors with guns drawn.

This unprecedented assault by President Trump’s most loyal followers was nothing less than an attempted coup.

Today’s violence was not isolated, it has been the culmination of years of Donald Trump fanning the flames of suspicion, conspiracy and division for his own political gain. At every turn, he has undermined our rule of law, undermined the safety and security of the American people, and even now continues to push his most frantic defenders to greater and more dangerous extremes.

As President-Elect Joe Biden said in his remarks earlier today, enough is enough is enough. For the safety of our people, republic, our laws and our Constitution, Congress must adopt articles of impeachment and remove Donald Trump from office immediately.

01/06/2021

My staff and I are safe. Thank you to everyone who has reached out.

An incredibly sad day for our republic.

This Trump EPA rule is another attempt to roll back public health & environmental protections for the benefit of special...
01/05/2021
Tonko Denounces EPA Anti-Science Rule

This Trump EPA rule is another attempt to roll back public health & environmental protections for the benefit of special interests.

Politics shouldn’t come before science.

This toxic ruling must be reversed. #ScienceNotSilence #CensoredScience

WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Paul D. Tonko today decried the “Selective Science” rule finalized by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler that would limit the ability of EPA policy makers to use scientific research when developing public protections and environmental ...

01/05/2021
"Yet the president persists": Georgia's top election official refutes Trump claims

The 2020 election was a remarkable achievement in self-governance. More than 150 million Americans cast ballots—a record!—facing down danger and uncertainty to elect Joe Biden as our new President.

With numerous recounts completed, ample evidence reviewed, lawsuits dismissed & conspiracies debunked, the will of the people will prevail.

Working underhandedly to undermine that outcome is a violation of our oath & an assault on the foundation of our republic: “We, the People.”

The people have spoken, their electors chosen and every justifiable challenge resolved.

Tomorrow, my colleagues will need to—at long last—put country before personal politics and vote to confirm the will of the people & recognize Joe Biden as our next duly elected President of the United States.

"This is all easily, provably false," Georgia election official Gabriel Sterling said as he debunked multiple false claims of vote fraud.

It is my highest honor to represent our Capital Region communities in Washington DC.We begin this 117th Congress during ...
01/05/2021

It is my highest honor to represent our Capital Region communities in Washington DC.

We begin this 117th Congress during a time of extraordinary difficulty. I am ready and committed to deliver for the American people.

We are a nation of laws.With this call, President Trump showed both an understanding of the law & willingness to break i...
01/04/2021
Did Trump break the law? President's call to Georgia's Raffensperger spurs demand for criminal investigation

We are a nation of laws.

With this call, President Trump showed both an understanding of the law & willingness to break it, undermining the ability of ‘We, the People’ to elect our chosen leaders.

In America, no one is above the law. He must be held accountable for his actions.

President Trump made an hour-long phone call apparently seeking to strong-arm Georgia officials to overturn election results, which may be illegal.

2020 presented us with many challenges. We worked to tackle COVID-19 & deliver a needed rescue on behalf of the American...
01/01/2021

2020 presented us with many challenges. We worked to tackle COVID-19 & deliver a needed rescue on behalf of the American people.

I am eager to enter the 117th Congress—and 2021—with a plan to defeat the virus, strengthen our economy and help struggling families.
#HappyNewYear!

This time of year, we remain connected by the love we share for our families, neighbors and communities.Wishing a #Merry...
12/25/2020

This time of year, we remain connected by the love we share for our families, neighbors and communities.

Wishing a #MerryChristmas to all as we spread peace, faith & love this holiday season! 🎅

My team as put together a recap of district services my office was able to provide for Capital Region communities and co...
12/22/2020
Tonko Releases District Scorecard Marking Year of Service to Capital Region

My team as put together a recap of district services my office was able to provide for Capital Region communities and constituents this year, including COVID-19 resources and services, small business assistance, help with federal agencies and much more.

Now more than ever, our nation needs public servants who are dedicated to the hard work of delivering vital services and fighting for the basic rights of our citizens to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I am blessed to have an incredible team of dedicated staffers behind me who are just as passionate as I am about lifting our Capital Region and helping the people and communities we serve.

I am deeply proud of the people, businesses and organizations of this region who have stayed strong in the face of one of the hardest years in our nation’s history, and I am grateful to my team and everyone who worked with us for everything we have achieved in and for our district, even in the midst of this COVID-19 challenge. I am eager to get back to Washington in January to continue the fight for our nurses, teachers, first responders, small businesses, working families and all of our friends and loved ones as we renter the final stretch of this pandemic.

"I am deeply proud of the people, businesses and organizations of this region who have stayed strong in the face of one of the hardest years in our nation’s history, and I am grateful to my team and everyone who worked with us for everything we have achieved in and for our district, even in the mi...

My office has launched a new constituent portal at Tonko.house.gov where you can share insights, catch up on my latest n...
12/22/2020
U.S. Representative Paul Tonko

My office has launched a new constituent portal at Tonko.house.gov where you can share insights, catch up on my latest news, request help with a federal agency and more!

As always, my team and I stand ready to serve you however we can.

U.S. Representative Paul Tonko Proudly Serving New York's Capital Region

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2369 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington D.C., DC
20515

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