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Rodney Frelinghuysen

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 11th district
Assumed office 
January 3, 1995
Preceded by Dean Gallo

Born April 29, 1946 (1946-04-29) (age 63)
New York City, New York
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Virginia Robinson (m. 1980)
Residence Harding, New Jersey
Alma mater Hobart College
Occupation political assistant
Religion Episcopalian
Military service
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1969-1971
Unit 93rd Engineer Battalion
Battles/wars Vietnam War

Rodney P. Frelinghuysen (pronounced /ˈfriːlɪŋhaɪsən/; born April 29, 1946 in New York City) is an American Republican Party politician, who has served as a member of the United States House of Representatives representing New Jersey's 11th congressional district (map) since 1995.



Frelinghuysen is a member of a family long prominent in New Jersey politics. He is the son of Peter Hood Ballantine Frelinghuysen, Jr., great-great grandson of Frederick T. Frelinghuysen, and great-great-great nephew of Theodore Frelinghuysen, who each represented New Jersey in Congress. After graduating from Hobart College in 1969, where he had been president of The Kappa Alpha Society. Frelinghuysen enlisted in the United States Army. Following basic training at Fort Dix, he served with the 93rd Engineer Battalion in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam.

After his military service, Frelinghuysen worked for the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders until he was elected to serve as a Freeholder in 1974.

In 1983, Frelinghuysen was elected to the New Jersey General Assembly (the lower house of the New Jersey Legislature) from the 26th legislative district. Midway through his sixth term, Congressman Dean Gallo abandoned his reelection bid after discovering he had incurable prostate cancer. Frelinghuysen was chosen to replace Gallo as the Republican candidate in the 11th District. As this district is one of the most reliably Republican districts in the Northeast, this all but assured him of election in November. He has been reelected seven times by large margins.

Like other Republicans from New Jersey, Frelinghuysen has a moderate voting record. He is a member of the Republican Main Street Partnership, the Republican Majority For Choice, Republicans for Choice and Republicans For Environmental Protection. The Sunlight Foundation pointed out that among the 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, Frelinghuysen has the third-highest amount of investment in oil stocks.[1]

He is one of two New Jersey Republican House members who are pro-choice on abortion. When he was a member of the New Jersey General Assembly, he made a small financial contribution to the activist/civil disobedience group ACT UP.

In 2009, Frelinghuysen was the chief sponsor of 16 bills, 11 of which had no co-sponsors. He co-sponsored 90 other bills, occasionally with Democrats on non-controversial issues.

In the 2000 elections, left-wing activist Michael Moore attempted to have a ficus challenge Frelinghuysen's unopposed re-election, to make a point about how rarely congressmen are held accountable for their terms in office. "Most run unopposed in their primaries and 95% are re-elected every time in the general election", as stated in the press release for the plant's candidacy, written by Moore, which also remarked, "We think it's time to point out to the Frelinghuysen family that we live in a democracy, not a dynasty."[2] (Since 1793, New Jersey has sent six Frelinghuysens to Congress — four to the U.S. Senate and two to the House of Representatives.)

On May 24, 2007, Frelinghuysen chased down a pickpocket who had stolen his wallet near his home in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C. Two Washington police officers saw the chase and arrested the 18-year-old suspect who had been caught by the 61-year-old congressman.[3]

Committee assignments

Electoral history

New Jersey's 11th congressional district: Results 1994–2006[4]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
1994 Frank Herbert 50,211 28% Rodney Frelinghuysen 127,868 71% Mary Frueholz LaRouche Was Right 1,065 1% *
1996 Chris Evangel 78,742 31% Rodney Frelinghuysen 169,091 66% Ed DeMott Independent 2,870 1% Austin S. Lett Independent 2,618 1% *
1998 John P. Scollo 44,160 30% Rodney Frelinghuysen 100,910 68% Austin S. Lett Independent 1,737 1% Agnes James Independent 1,409 1% *
2000 John P. Scollo 80,958 30% Rodney Frelinghuysen 186,140 68% John Pickarski Independent 5,199 2% James Spinosa Independent 1,541 1%
2002 Vij Pawar 48,477 26% Rodney Frelinghuysen 132,938 72% Richard S. Roth Libertarian 2,263 1%
2004 James W. Buell 91,811 31% Rodney Frelinghuysen 200,915 68% John Mele Immigration Moratorium Now 1,746 1% Austin S. Lett Libertarian 1,530 1%
2006 Tom Wyka 74,414 37% Rodney Frelinghuysen 126,085 62% Richard S. Roth Libertarian 1,730 1% John Mele Constitution 842 <1%
2008 Tom Wyka 105,095 37% Rodney Frelinghuysen 177,059 62%
*Write-in and minor candidate notes: In 1994, Stuart Bacha received 436 votes. In 1996, Victoria S. Spruiell received 1,837 votes. In 1998, Stephen A. Bauer received 755 votes.

See also


External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Dean Gallo
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 11th congressional district



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