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Democratic congressmen to face off in newly drawn district

By Bill Wichert
Published on Wednesday, December 28th, 2011 at 11:45 a.m.

A showdown between two Democratic congressmen is shaping up to be one of New Jersey’s hottest political battles of the New Year.

U.S. Rep. Steve Rothman announced yesterday that he would challenge fellow Democrat and U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell in the June primary to represent the newly drawn 9th Congressional District, which will contain parts of Bergen, Passaic and Hudson counties.

The move comes after a redistricting commission last week reduced the number of New Jersey districts from 13 to 12, putting Rothman in a Republican-leaning district.

As the two congressmen begin forming their game plans, PolitiFact New Jersey wanted to revisit how each representative has performed against our Truth-O-Meter. With one fact-check each, each man has done pretty well.

Pascrell received a Mostly True in September, and Rothman got a True in November.

Pascrell claim

In a Sept. 2 radio interview, Pascrell said between 600,000 and 700,000 government workers have been laid off in the last year and a half. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the congressman’s numbers were slightly off.

At the time he made that statement, the nation had lost 512,000 government jobs at the federal, state and local level in the past 18 months.

Pascrell also has been fact-checked three other times by our PolitiFact colleagues. For his complete file, go here.

Rothman claim

Rothman said in a statement submitted to the Congressional Record on Nov. 2 that "it costs more than a penny for the U.S. Mint to make a one cent coin and more than a nickel to make the five cent piece."

The congressman was right, according to the U.S. Mint’s most recent annual report. In 2010, producing and distributing a penny cost 1.79 cents, and a nickel cost 9.22 cents.

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