This is the American way

Article posted on March 31, 2009

I am working at my office at the capitol this evening and primarily getting through some emails, I have plenty. This afternoon, Senator Mike Folmer, Representative Curt Schroeder and I spoke at a rally on the capitol steps with some business organizations on the topic of “card check”. The interesting thing was that the AFL-CIO bused in protesters to shout over us. We all said that it proved the point that if the unions were given the “card check” law, that intimidation could or probably would happen. None of us were intimidated, but having a group of people show up at your home or talk to you in front of your co-workers would be very difficult for many people. “Joe the Plumber” was there with us and he seemed like a nice guy, he was well spoken and handled the crowd well. I announced today that I am sponsoring a bill that would amend our state constitution to include language that would require secret ballots in all union organization efforts. This is the American way, I can hardly believe that anyone would suggest otherwise.

– John


Article posted on March 31, 2009

Constitutional Amendment would ensure that employees have the right to vote by secret ballot when organizing


Harrisburg, PA –Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr., appearing with “Joe the Plumber” (Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher) on the steps of the Capitol building, announced his intention to introduce a joint resolution that would amend the Pennsylvania Constitution and insert language to guarantee the right of workers to organize a union through a secret ballot.


“With all of the talk by our Federal officials about the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), Pennsylvania needs to take the proper steps to protect the freedom of all workers to choose if they wish to be represented by a union or not,” Eichelberger explained.  “The EFCA does everything but protect an employee’s choice.”


Senator Eichelberger will be sending a co-sponsorship memo to his colleagues requesting that they sign onto this resolution.  The resolution itself will be formally introduced in the coming weeks.



I won’t be one of them

Article posted on March 30, 2009

I had an unusual day at the capitol today in that I never went to my office until after 5:30 in the evening. I got to Harrisburg just before session at 1:00 and had staff meet me in the chamber to give me my green book (the book that has the bills in that we are voting on for the day) and take my coat and brief case. I left the chamber and went to a caucus meeting, then to a Senator’s office then to a meeting downtown then I came back to the capitol to my office, I hope that things go smoother tomorrow. I am afraid, and have been afraid that we will end up with a tax increase this year. The budget shortfall is getting worse and people are talking tough but still want their particular interests covered in the budget. These are the signs that in the end, when push comes to shove, that many members will cave in and vote for tax increases to get the programs or projects they want. I won’t be one of them if tax increases are involved.

– John

Earned a good meal

Article posted on March 29, 2009

After church this morning I got to a race that I have participated in for a long time, the Ken Brumbaugh Memorial Race. This is a 5 miler that starts at the bottom of the hill leading up to the Horseshoe Curve (outside of Altoona) and brings you back down the hill to Leopold Park. The weather for this race is always interesting and today was no exception, in the 40’s, wind at 20 MPH and raining off and on. We still had a big group and my time wasn’t too bad, 37 minutes and 57 seconds. I worked the rest of day and got caught up on some scheduling and other paper work. Charlotte is making turkey chili tonight for supper and I think that I have earned a good meal after my run today.

– John

PLC – Day Two

Article posted on March 28, 2009

I came back from the Pennsylvania Leadership Conference today after spending some more time with conservative organizations (and some that call themselves conservative organizations) and individuals, like me who attend. I always learn things at these gatherings, not just about what is going on around our world, but how we should approach the situations that we are faced with. Do we fear tomorrow and turn over more power to our government so that they can help us get through a problem, or do we fight to be left alone so that we have the resources and the freedom to work ourselves out of a difficult time. I always support the latter thought, but see that plenty of our elected leaders in both Harrisburg and Washington hold the big government view. These are the times that shape our nation and state, we are at a crossroad and will be forced to turn to the left or to the right. We are definitely turning to the left in Washington and turning not quite as sharply in the same direction in Harrisburg. These changes will affect our way of life and our children’s lives for a long time to come, we had all better do everything we can, to make sure that the right choices are made and that the right people are there to make them.

– John

PLC Day One

Article posted on March 27, 2009

I got a few hours of work in this morning then went to the Pennsylvania Leadership Conference in Harrisburg. I spoke on a panel this afternoon concerning the budget and talked to a lot of good folks. This is the meeting place for all of the conservatives in PA. A few of us were there from the Senate and a few from the House. The keynote speaker at tonight’s dinner was Michael Reagan, I got to sit at his table during the meal. I had met him before in Altoona and find him to be a genuinely nice guy. His remarks tonight will be on PCN, if you can catch it, I think that you’ll like it.

– John

They are a big part of our society

Article posted on March 26, 2009

I had a number of appointments in the district today with the last one this evening being at Mt. Union High School. At this time of year, I have regional meetings with school district boards and superintendents sponsored by the PA School Boards Association. Tonight was a meeting with the four Huntingdon County districts. We review a lot of issues pertaining to schools including the budget, of course. I have similar meetings coming up in Bedford and Blair Counties. They are all similar but since the districts vary, each issue is viewed a little differently. I am surprised how much time I spend on school issues. For many reasons, they are a big part of our society.

– John

Senator Eichelberger to Hold First Blair County Town Hall

Article posted on March 26, 2009


Opportunity for constituents to learn about state issues


On Tuesday, April 7, 2009, Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr. will hold his first 2009 Town Hall meeting in Bellwood, Pennsylvania.


“I enjoy holding town hall meetings and interacting with those whom I represent.  It is a good way to bring government to the people in the 30th District, providing a direct forum to empower citizens,” he says.


John will offer a brief legislative and budget update at the meeting.


WHO:       State Senator John H. Eichelberger, Jr.

WHAT:     Town Hall Meeting

WHEN:     Tuesday, April 7, 2009, 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

WHERE:   Bell Mansion Senior Center

                   1 Main Street

                   Bellwood, PA 16617


Media RSVP is appreciated.  Please call Legislative Aide, Julie Garofalo at 814-695-8386 or email




I have some woodshedding to do

Article posted on March 25, 2009

This morning we got all of the bills on the agenda through our Local Government Committee. The newspaper association is not happy about a loss of revenue if these bills become law. They have lobbied hard over the past few days with arguments that make no sense to me and evidently anyone else who had a vote. We are going to work on some amendments to help strengthen and clarify parts of the bills, these will be offered at the Appropriations Committee since they get the bills next. Getting these bills through the process is a long haul. I stopped at the house on my way home from Harrisburg and picked up my cornet. I was asked to play on Easter with our church choir and my first practice was tonight. Things went well but I have some woodshedding to do.

– John

One that everyone is proud of

Article posted on March 24, 2009

I had students from Juniata College and Saint Francis University in to see me this morning. The schools were part of a group of schools visiting the capitol and lobbying for some issues. The kids were bright and actually pretty entertaining. We don’t have much of a legislative agenda on the floor yet, but we are busy getting started in this new session with committee meetings. As chairman of the Local Government Committee, I know that we have more bills to run through the committee than we have time on the agenda. We are running 13 bills and one resolution through the committee tomorrow, that’s a lot for one meeting. I attended the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs dinner tonight at the Hershey Lodge. I sat with some nice people from PennDOT and the Township Supervisors Association. Joe Dodson, the Mayor of Hollidaysburg was there and gave me a box of Slinky’s to hand out to people. In case you didn’t know, Slinky is a Hollidaysburg business and one that everyone is proud of.

– John