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Boyle sworn into Congress

January 14, 2015
In The News

By Tom Waring, Northeast Times

In early 2013, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz an­nounced she wouldn’t seek an­oth­er term, and in­stead would run for gov­ernor.

Boyle entered the con­gres­sion­al race while also run­ning un­op­posed for his state House seat.

The 13th Con­gres­sion­al Dis­trict is about evenly split between Phil­adelphia and Mont­gomery County. Boyle was the only Phil­adelphi­an in the race, with three oth­ers hail­ing from Mont­gomery County.

Bill and Hil­lary Clin­ton, the top Demo­crat­ic lead­ers in Mont­gomery County and some Phil­adelphia ward lead­ers lined up be­hind former con­gress­wo­man Mar­jor­ie Mar­gol­ies, but Boyle piled up huge num­bers in the city and went on to eas­ily win the primary. He hand­ily won the gen­er­al elec­tion.

On Jan. 6, Boyle took the oath of of­fice, be­com­ing one of 435 mem­bers of the House of Rep­res­ent­at­ives. He is the first North­east res­id­ent to serve in Con­gress since Rep. Bob Bor­ski re­tired in 2002.

Boyle was as­signed to the House For­eign Af­fairs Com­mit­tee. He and oth­er mem­bers at­ten­ded a Monday night ses­sion at the Cap­it­ol with Ger­ard Araud, France’s am­bas­sad­or to the United States. They ex­pressed con­dol­ences to him after a series of ter­ror­ist at­tacks in that na­tion res­ul­ted in 17 deaths.

Boyle and new mem­bers also at­ten­ded ori­ent­a­tion ses­sions last week­end in Wil­li­ams­burg, Vir­gin­ia, learn­ing about policy and pro­ced­ure. FBI Dir­ect­or James Comey ad­dressed rep­res­ent­at­ives. So did U.S. Army Gen. Mar­tin De­mp­sey, chair­man of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“It was a very im­press­ive present­a­tion,” Boyle said of De­mp­sey’s dis­cus­sion and ques­tion-and-an­swer peri­od.

Boyle voted on a couple of is­sues on Jan. 8 and 9. He voted against a bill call­ing for the long-delayed con­struc­tion of the 1,700-mile Key­stone XL Pipeline. Sup­port­ers say the pipeline will cre­ate jobs and lead to en­ergy in­de­pend­ence, and point to a De­part­ment of State study show­ing little en­vir­on­ment­al im­pact.

Pres­id­ent Barack Obama is threat­en­ing a veto of the bill, which has the back­ing of busi­ness and labor groups. Even 28 House Demo­crats voted for it last Fri­day.

“I’m not against all pipelines,” Boyle said, adding that he doesn’t think the be­ne­fits out­weigh the en­vir­on­ment­al im­pact.

This week, there will also be a vote on wheth­er to de­fund the ex­ec­ut­ive ac­tion taken by Obama after last Novem­ber’s elec­tion to give leg­al status to as many as 4.5 mil­lion il­leg­al im­mig­rants.

Boyle, who is call­ing for a bi­par­tis­an com­pre­hens­ive im­mig­ra­tion re­form law, ex­pects to vote against the de­fund­ing bill.

“The pres­id­ent ac­ted with­in his dis­cre­tion,” he said.

Loc­ally, Boyle’s state dis­trict of­fice at 14230 Bustleton Ave. will re­main open un­der House su­per­vi­sion un­til a re­place­ment is elec­ted on March 24.

Boyle’s Phil­adelphia con­gres­sion­al dis­trict of­fice is loc­ated at 2375 Wood­ward St., Suite 105. His sub­urb­an of­fice is in Glen­side. He ex­pects to open two oth­er of­fices, one in the city and the oth­er in Mont­gomery County.

Boyle will be there next Tues­day when Obama de­liv­ers his State of the Uni­on ad­dress, and he’s look­ing for­ward to weigh­ing in on for­eign and do­mest­ic is­sues and mak­ing sure his dis­trict of­fices provide strong con­stitu­ent ser­vices.

The new con­gress­man is still sa­vor­ing the mo­ment.

“It’s a huge hon­or,” he said