Former Republican Congressman Jon Runyan says he got fed up with the do-nothing Congress

 Rep. Jon Runyan shown in his Marlton, N.J., District office Oct. 10, 2012. (AP File Photo/Mel Evans)

Rep. Jon Runyan shown in his Marlton, N.J., District office Oct. 10, 2012. (AP File Photo/Mel Evans)

On the day his successor was sworn into office, former U.S. Rep. Jon Runyan said he hasn’t yet decided what he’s going to do now that he’s out of Congress. “I’m working on a bunch of stuff,” he said. “I’m throwing stuff at the wall and trying to see what sticks.” Republican Tom MacArthur was elected in November to represent the 3rd District.
He’s kicking around some possibilities. Business development consulting, maybe. He could go into something related to his sports career as a former Philadelphia Eagle, such as broadcasting. He’s been on Howard Eskin’s show, though he wasn’t able to get paid while serving as a member of Congress. He might even remain in politics, in some capacity.
But on Tuesday, there was one option that didn’t appeal to him in the least — running for Congress again. He’s still feeling a lot of the disillusionment and frustration toward Washington that was evident when he announced in late 2013 that he would not seek a third term.
“The biggest thing down there is that you’re always going to hear the extremes of every argument,” Runyan said. “Nobody wants to talk about anything that’s positive.”
Runyan, a Republican moderate, clashed with the Tea Party wing of his party. He also bumped heads with House GOP leadership when he criticized the government shutdown to oppose President Obama’s health care law.
He said that the overall mindset in Washington when he was there seemed to be more about preventing things from happening than getting anything done.  
Yes, there were some good moments. He liked interacting with the people from the Third District, at town hall meetings or just in the course of day-to-day activities.
He’s proud of being among a group of Republicans that pressured House leadership to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994. Though even that process was full of frustration, when members of the GOP conservative wing opposed it over provisions that expanded federal protections to gays, lesbians, Native Americans and immigrants.
“I thought it was a no-brainer,” Runyan said of the reauthorization.
Whatever he ends up doing now, Runyan said he’s just pleased that he’ll be able to spend more time with his family.
“Let’s see what makes sense in the future,” he said.
Related: Jon Runyan appeared on Radio Times and expressed his biggest frustrations
This post is part of our South Jersey Politics Blog

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