NJ-based Lawmakers Prepare Legislation for More Aid to Turkey

PATERSON – Turkey may be far away from this gritty city, but Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. on Friday offered a very down-to-earth connection.

He said the first slice of pizza he ever had was bought at a Turkish pizzeria in the city. That was about 80 years ago. After all, Pascrell is 86.

The point was simple.

“We’ve been neighbors and brothers for many years,” he said during services at the city’s Ulu Cami Mosque.

And now the “neighbors and brothers” need help.

The death toll from an earthquake earlier this month spanning the border of Turkey and Syria is now more than 45,000.

Pascrell was joined by mayor Andre Sayegh and Sen. Cory Booker in speaking to the congregation about relief efforts.

The congressman said legislation to send more aid to the region has been drafted, but not yet approved. He said some of the aid would be “heavy equipment” to help the rescue and recovery effort.

Booker spoke of an “unprecedented level of destruction.”

The senator added, “This is not a time when we think about boundaries … This is a time we recognize we are all God’s children.”

But there is – as always – a political impediment here.

There is despair in both countries, but as noted, Turkey is an “important ally” of the United States; not so Syria. Some of the Syrian regions damaged by the quake are in areas controlled by opponents of the government.

This morning was not a time for much politics, however.

Booker stressed the need to “stand in solidarity with those who are suffering.”

He said he would do all he can to make sure the United States does not abandon Turkey in its time of need.

The officials spoke after about 100 worshippers took part in services.

In asking for the congregation and others to donate to relief efforts, Pascrell summed things up this way:

“If we can’t help our own people, what good are we?”

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2 responses to “NJ-based Lawmakers Prepare Legislation for More Aid to Turkey”

  1. Rep. Bill Pascrell and Booker , how about relief efforts for those American citizens in Ohio , why don’t you demand humanitarian efforts for Americans first. Biden and his administration bunch of losers it is disgusting that immediate aid and assistance of all kinds has not been given to our fellow Americans. Pascrell practice what you preach “If we can’t help our own people , what good are we.”

  2. Congressman Cadaver Pascrell is nothing but a Manchurian Candidate panderer. He wants to send our tax monies all over the world, but zero for our own people, especially in East Palestine, Ohio. This kind of nonsense is now a good time to consider stopping paying taxes as conscientious objectors opposing our government funding wars and giving foreign aid to our enemies. It’s been done before (U.S. v. Snider, 502 F.2d 645 (4th Cir. 1974). Terminate the IRS and IRC (Code) and put in place a FAIR TAX that is a maximum 20% of all goods and services, except new homes and new automobiles. Everyone pays their FAIR SHARE and it would be an EQUITABLE TAX!

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