Speaker of House on campaign trail for Republicans, Conservatives

Orange County’s Otterkill Country Club provided the backdrop for Rep. Mike Johnson (R/C-Louisiana) visit to the Hudson Valley to endorse a new candidate for the House of Representatives, former NYPD police officer Alison Esposito.

Johnson was elevated to Speaker in October of 2023.

He was warmly greeted by the crowd, which included several elected officials, police officers and EMS workers who crowded the room to hear the Speaker’s take on the role his party will take on the road to the White House 2024. 

He praised Esposito’s character and conviction. “If I had to create the perfect candidate, you’re the one,” said Johnson to Esposito. “We have to spread the message across the country, because this is one of the most important elections of our lifetime. Everyone is feeling the pain acutely…hardworking families are struggling…. and we need to restore law and order and stress the importance of backing the blue.”

Since President Joseph Biden took office, some 16 million undocumented persons have crossed the U.S. borders both from Mexico and Canada. To stem the flow, said Johnson, “We passed the Secure the Border Act 18 months ago,” adding that the legislation has sat on Senate leader Charles Schumer’s desk for the past 18 months.

He also noted Biden has had the ability to close the border without Congressional approval but has, to date, neglected to use that power.

Johnson also stated that his party has committed to preventing none U.S. citizens from participating in federal elections and has championed legislation that would require voters to provide documentation proving their citizenship. 

Johnson said the House has passed the SAVE Act, designed to require all 50 states to obtain proof of citizenship and to audit their current voter rolls and hopes to see the Senate join the House in passing it this election cycle. That legislation is also in abeyance.

In Tuesday’s primary, Esposito won the Republican/Conservative nod in the 18 .

She will run against incumbent Democrat Pat Ryan, former Ulster County executive, in November.

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