And that’s the portion of the article that caused it all.
Saily Avelenda is a Democrat, living in the New Jersey 11th Congressional district. The Republican in Congress representing the 11th is Rodney Frelinghuysen, who chairs the House Appropriations Committee.
Sialy, like me, isn’t fond of Republicans. Saily joined a PAC called NJ 11th for Change. The PAC is duly registered, totally legal. It’s Saily’s right to join this group if she wishes.
But Frelinghuysen didn’t like it one little bit that people are actively working to unseat him.
So he decided to shut her up, to punish her, to frighten her.
He contacted her employer.
The person he contacted was a member of the board of directors of Lakeland Bank. Saily Avelenda was a senior vice president and assistant general counsel of that bank.
What Frelinghuysen did was send out a typical “I am working hard, but I need your money” letter to his supporters. In it, he did the “I’m being attacked by evil Democrats” routine. On the copy that was sent to the bank board member, he wrote by hand at the bottom:
P. S. One of the ringleaders works in your bank!
He attached a copy of the article quoting Saily.
The result was that Avelenda had to write a statement for her boss, apparently explaining why she was exercising her constitutional right to free speech and political activism.
I looked very carefully, and that single article that I included above is the sum of what Freylinghuysen was pissed off about. She didn’t call him an asshole (he is). She didn’t use his name. She just said she wanted to disseminate information so voters could make informed choices. That’s all.
She was not fired, but she resigned.
I do not blame her for leaving. How could she continue to work for asshole Republicans who think it’s perfectly okay to do this to people? How can democracy function if opposing views are threatened with retaliation and silenced? We have a president (that moron in the White House) who has done this sort of thing his entire life.
It’s a cancer, and it’s spreading.
But you watch. There will be no huge public outcry about this. Republicans won’t even see anything wrong with it. Congress will do nothing to this representative.
I have to wonder if Frelinghuysen would have gone after a man.
I am spitting nails.