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Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-Hamilton). (Photo: Chris Smith).

Smith votes with Democrats on plan to end shutdown

20-term congressman was one of five Republicans to back measure

By David Wildstein, January 03 2019 10:59 pm

All twelve members of New Jersey’s House delegation — eleven Democrats and Republican Christopher Smith — voted for a continuing resolution that would end the shutdown of the federal government without funding President Donald Trump’s border wall.

Smith, who was sworn in today for his 20th term in Congress, was one of five Republicans who voted with the new 234-member Democratic majority.

His vote was limited to one resolution that would fund border security through February 9, giving the House an additional month to continue negotiations.  Smith voted against another resolution that would have funded the federal government through September 30, and voted in favor of the border wall last month.

The White House was quick to threaten a veto if the Senate passes the House resolution.  According to published reports, a handful of Republican Senators could potentially support the measure.

After Democrats flipped four House seats in the November 2018 mid-term election, Smith became New Jersey’s lone Republican congressman.

“It is my sincere hope that Republicans and Democrats in Congress can seize this chance to show that we can forge responsible consensus together, rather than remaining hostage to the president’s whims,” said Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Rocky Hill), who took office on Thursday. “If we can do that, we will not only reopen the government but restore the Congress to a coequal branch of government, and start to make real progress on the issues voters demanded in November.”

This story was updated to include comment from Malinowski.

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