JANUARY 24th, 2019
Contact: Eric Holl

Abraham Misses Votes To Re-Open Govt Hours After Feigning Concern For Louisianans Affected By The Shutdown

Last week, we found out that Representative Abraham will say whatever he thinks it takes to get elected—and then break his word. Today, we saw that in full effect.

In an appearance on KSYL this morning, Abraham waxed poetic about his concern for Louisianans affected by the shutdown, saying “we’ve got to take care of those workers” and then saying “we’ve got to have some empathy for that family who’s signed up to go work and made it and now they’re not getting paid.”

But hours later, Abraham had a chance to help Louisianans affected by the shutdown. This morning, the House voted on legislation to re-open government. Abraham didn’t even bother showing up to vote.

Abraham also skipped votes to re-open government yesterday. Why the no-shows? Yesterday, cameras caught him at a fundraiser for his gubernatorial campaign. Today, we found out he has a fundraiser in Baton Rouge keeping him from making his votes.

He chooses raising campaign cash over re-opening government and helping the people he claims to care about.

“Representative Abraham can’t claim to care about Louisianans affected by the shutdown when he’s skipping shutdown-ending votes to go to fundraisers. We’ve seen time and time again that Rep. Abraham can’t keep his word. First he said he’d donate his salary to charities that help sick kids and wounded veterans and went back on that. Now he’s saying he wants to help Louisianans affected by the shutdown, and then abandoning his job. You just can’t trust Ralph Abraham to do what he says he’ll do,” said Eric Holl, spokesman for Victory 2019, the Democratic Coordinated Campaign.




This Morning: Abraham Said About The Shutdown “We’ve Got To Take Care Of Those Workers …We’ve Got To Have Some Empathy For That Family Who’s Signed Up To Go Work And Made It And Now They’re Not Getting Paid.” During an interview on KSYL, Abraham was asked about the shutdown and said “Well I don’t know Matthew, we’ve got to take care of those workers. Again, I’ve talked to a lot of these people, and they’re just like you and I. I mean these are families, and single people, and you know they just want a job. They thought they had a job, but now they have one that they’re having to step back and look, do I continue in this capacity or to your point, do I go out and get a job that is more secure as far as the realms of the political winds. I mean yeah, we do live in a capitalistic society and I like capitalism, and that’s what made America great and will continue to make us even greater, but again, we’ve got to have some empathy for that family who’s signed up to go work and made it and now they’re not getting paid, So there’s a lot of moving parts to this issue.” [KSYL, 1/24/19]

Today: Abraham Missed A Vote On A Bill To Fund The Department Of Homeland Security. According to the Clerk of the House, Abraham missed a vote on a bill to fund appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security through February 2019. [H. J. Res. 31, roll #51, 1/24/19]

Today: Abraham Has A Fundraiser In Baton Rouge. According to the Advocate’s Elizabeth Crisp, Abraham has a fundraiser in Baton Rouge on January 24, 2019. [Elizabeth Crisp Twitter, 1/24/19]

Abraham Skipped A Vote To Reopen Government On January 23rd. According to the U.S. House Clerk, Rep. Abraham missed a vote yesterday on a bill “Making further continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2019, and for other purposes” [H. J. Res. 28, roll #46, 1/23/19]


Abraham Had A Fundraiser In Northeast Louisiana On January 23rd In The Afternoon. According to the Advocate’s Elizabeth Crisp, Abraham had a fundraiser in Lake Providence, Louisiana on January 23rd from Noon to 1:30 pm. [Elizabeth Crisp Twitter, 1/22/19]

VIDEO: Abraham Caught Leaving A Fundraiser In Northeast Louisiana While The House Was Voting On Bills To Open Government On January 23rd[American Bridge, 1/23/19]



When Asked If The Government Shutdown Allowed Him To Spend Time On The Campaign Trail, Abraham Said “No, Not At All.” During an interview on Talk 107.3, Abraham had the following exchange, BRIAN HALDANE: “Congressman, looking at 2019, you’re going to have to do a lot of campaigning around the state and you’re starting off 2019 with the federal government shut down. I hate to ask you this way, does that free up your schedule?” RALPH ABRAHAM: “Well no, not at all. I certainly understand my job as a Congressman, and that’s to represent the people of the 5th District of Louisiana.” [Clarence Buggs Show, Talk 107.3, 1/2/19]

When Criticized For Missing Votes, Abraham’s Spokeperson Claimed Abraham Had The Highest Attendance Rate Of All Louisiana Congressmen. “When reached for comment, Abraham’s spokesman stressed the Congressman’s support for those impacted by the shutdown. ‘He supports back pay for furloughed workers,’ said Cole Avery, spokesman for Rep. Abraham. ‘He had the highest attendance rate of all Louisiana congressman in the 115th Congress. He has a lifetime voting attendance record of 99.2%.’” [KALB, 1/11/19]

On Twitter, Abraham’s Staff Criticized Others For Saying Abraham Couldn’t Focus On His Job In DC While Running For Governor. “The hypocrisy of @JohnBelforLA is disappointing. Already attacking @abraham_ralph, despite fact that no votes missed this week in DC. Same Governor who made sure to fundraise for himself in DC as critical flood recovery underway.” [Luke Letlow, Twitter, 12/28/18]


Advocate Front Page Headline: “Abraham Collects Congressional Salary After Pledging Not To” [The Advocate, 1/18/19]

The Advocate: Abraham Pledged “He Would Not Collect His Salary […] But It Turns Out That Voters In Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District Are Indeed Paying For His Representation.” “Running for Congress in 2014 as a political outsider, Dr. Ralph Abraham made a pledge that resonated with voters in his conservative northeast Louisiana district: He would not collect his salary if he went to Washington. “It Should Be An Honor And A Privilege To Serve Your Country And NOT A Paid Position,” Abraham said on his campaign website. “YOU Should Not Pay A Penny For Representation.” He said he would donate his salary to charity. Abraham won the race, but it turns out that voters in Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District are indeed paying for his representation, at a cost of $174,000 per year.” [The Advocate, 1/17/19]

Abraham Promised To Donate His Salary To St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital In Memphis And To The Independence Fund. “Technically, members of Congress are prohibited from refusing their pay. However, they may donate it to charity. Abraham pledged during the 2014 campaign to donate his salary to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis and to the Independence Fund, a nonprofit based in Charlotte that assists catastrophically wounded or injured veterans.” [The Advocate, 1/17/19]

Abraham Is One Of The Wealthiest Members Of Congress. “Roll Call, a Washington newspaper that covers Congress, estimated a year ago that Abraham had a net worth of $4.8 million, making him the 65th wealthiest member of Congress.” [The Advocate, 1/17/19]