Failed Representation-Rosita Youngblood
District has not been well served by our current State Representative,
Rosita Youngblood. This charge is not made in anger, but in sorrow.
Representative Youngblood has lost touch with her district in Philadelphia and has alienated herself from the Democratic
Party in Harrisburg.
Where is Representative Youngblood?
Youngbloods troubles in the capital have made things even worse at
home. The life of the 198th district goes on around her with
little support from Representative Youngblood. Her office is rarely open
and she has no staff. Community groups and civic associations struggle
to carry out their activities with little support from the political
official closest to us. Businessmen try to create thriving commercial
corridors with no aid from the person who should be, but rarely is in
the thick of things. When all of the Northwest Philadelphia was faced with a serious threatSEPTAs plan
to discontinue the R8 train and C busRepresentative Youngbloods voice
was not to be heard. She has still issued no public statements or press
releases about the cut in mid-day service on the R8.
Representative Youngbloods Strange Votes
between Representative Youngblood problems in Harrisburg have gotten so bad that she sued the
Democratic Leadership in Federal court. She recently lost. One reason
for her troubles with the leadership is that she often votes in ways
that, from the perspective of her district, and the Democratic party,
are strange. Here are some examples. (Click the link above for more
Youngblood was the only Democratic to vote with the Republicans to
support HR1, which establishes the rules of the House of
Representatives. HR 1 also did
away with the requirement that each bill or amendment be clearly
explained before a vote is taken.
Youngblood was a co-sponsor of Joint Resolution 1326 which proposed an
amendment to the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that
would allow the legislature to set limits on non-economic damages
(damages for pain and suffering and punitive damages.) in cases of
medical malpractice. Representative Youngblood is also a sponsor,
along with a number of Republicans, of a bill, HB 139, that would
limit non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases to $250,000.
Such a hard and fast rule makes no more sense in law than it would in
- In the course of
the debate on Medical Malpractice, Representative Youngblood voted for
an amendment that would allow the legislature to set limits on
non-economic damages in all liability cases. Under this amendment, the
legislature could limit the pain and suffering and punitive damages
a corporation could be forced to pay for polluting the
environment or making a dangerous product..
Youngblood was one of only nine Democrats to vote against a
Democratic Telecommunications Bill that would reduce phone bills by
about $4 Billion; would make broadband internet access more
broadly available five to seven years earlier than is now required;
would have provided penalties for telephone companies that abuse their
customers; and would have prevented telephone companies from
increasing rates on small businesses without first getting approval
from the Public Utilities Commission.
- In 2001
Representative Youngblood was a co-sponsor HB 22, a bill that would
reduce and then eliminate the state inheritance tax. Of the 56
sponsors, only 14 were Democrats.
Youngblood voted for HB 1222, an unconstitutional bill that would
undermine the ability of local communities to regulate factory farms,
and the pollution they create. Under current law, state
regulations already take precedence over local zoning and nuisances
codes. While HB 1222s rightly seeks a means to insure that localities
adhere to this policy, it does not deal with the continuing problems
of factory farms. For example, by sending their manure to other farms,
livestock farmers can bypass the regulations on the spreading of
manure. This has lead to some notable cases of water pollution.
Thankfully, Governor Rendell vetoed this bill.