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Standing with his wife and son, Representative Bryan R. Lentz today announced his candidacy for Pennsylvania’s 7th Congressional District at a 10:00 AM press conference at American Legion Post 214 in Upper Darby. Lentz, who made his candidacy official just one day after Veteran’s Day, was joined by an enthusiastic crowd of over 120 supporters at the event.
“We need a Congress that is willing to stand up against the powerful special interests and stand on the side of regular people,” Lentz stated. “If you send me to Washington, I will put the interest of Main Street ahead of the interest of Wall Street. I will fight to create jobs and to keep jobs in this district. I won’t work for any party or any party boss, I will work for you.”
Lentz has already built a top-flight congressional campaign team that spearheaded the victories of Congressman Joe Sestak, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and Governor Ed Rendell. Lentz has won strong support for his candidacy even before the announcement today. He has raised more than $250,000, earned the endorsements of over seventy elected and local Democratic officials as well as the Delaware County AFL-CIO.
Speaking at the event today was Lieutenant Colonel Mark Busbee. “I served with Bryan and I can attest to his character, leadership and sense of public service,” Busbee stated. “I called Bryan back in 2004 and told him that we needed a leader to guide a battalion of 141 soldiers into battle in Iraq. Bryan didn’t have to go, and most people would be reluctant to do so, but Bryan didn’t hesitate. He is a leader and he knew that our battalion needed his leadership.”
A life-long resident of Southeastern Pennsylvania, Lentz has made service to his community and country his life’s work. In 1986, after graduating from Valley Forge Military College and Georgetown University, he became an Airborne Ranger, assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg North Carolina. He then attended law school at Temple University and served for six years as an assistant prosecutor. Lentz continued his service in the military as an Army reservist serving in Bosnia and volunteering after 9/11 to lead soldiers in Iraq in 2004. He was elected to the Pennsylvania House in 2006.
The 7th Congressional District includes most of Delaware County, along with southwestern Montgomery County and eastern Chester County. In 2006, Joe Sestak defeated Congressman Curt Weldon by twelve percentage points and in 2008 he easily won reelection by twenty percentage points. President Obama also won the district with fifty-six percent of the vote in 2008.
Lentz’s State House District lies entirely inside of the 7th Congressional District. He defeated a 28-year incumbent in 2006 in one of the most expensive and closely watched State House races in the entire Commonwealth. In 2008, voters overwhelmingly reelected Lentz to a second term in the State House.
As State Representative, Lentz serves on the House Veteran’s Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, the Transportation Committee, and is Chairman of the Subcommittee on Federal State Relations for the Intergovernmental Affairs Committee. During his time in the state legislature, Lentz has fought to create jobs, fought for tougher sentencing laws when violent crimes committed against the elderly, tightening parole regulations for repeat violent offenders, and promoting the local economy through clean energy initiatives.