Sen. Vincent J. Fumo
 

District Office

1208 Tasker Street
Phila, PA 19148
215-468-3866

Harrisburg Office

545 Main Capitol
Hbg, PA 17120
717-787-5662

 





  

_____________________NEWS RELEASE

State Senator
VINCENT J. FUMO

1st Senatorial District
Room 545 Main Capitol, Harrisburg PA 17120
Internet Website: www.fumo.com


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:  GARY TUMA
PHONE: 717-787-5662 
EMAIL: gtuma@fumo.com

FUMO ANNOUNCES HIS RETIREMENT


     PHILADELPHIA, March 12, 2008 Ė State Senator Vince Fumo (D-Philadelphia) today announced that he is retiring from public office, effective at the end of his current four-year term on November 30, 2008. He will petition Commonwealth Court to have his name removed as a candidate from the ballot for the April 22 primary.

     Fumo, 64, has represented the First State Senatorial District since winning a special election in 1978. He was subsequently elected to seven full terms, most recently in 2004. He served as chairman of the Democratic Appropriations Committee from 1984-2007.

     He made the following remarks at a press conference today at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.


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Remarks of Senator Vince Fumo, Announcing Retirement


     My father - Vince Fumo, Sr - suffered from Leukemia and passed away in 1992, shortly after my mother had died of complications from a broken hip - God bless them both. I always miss them, but on days like this I miss them the most.

     Even as I became an adult I viewed my father as a giant of a man. He came from modest means and built a great life for our family in south Philadelphia. My parents stressed education, and I became a teacher, they stressed service and I became a Senator, they taught me to respect others, to be loyal to friends, and to keep my word. As an only child, I have always tried my best to honor them.

     Above all my parents urged me to be guided by my heartfelt beliefs and to fight for what I believed in.

     Over the past thirty years, as Iíve served the people in my city and my district I am proud to say that I have never once taken a day off from my parents' approach to life.

     Iíve led so many fights - big and small - over the course of my career. Fights that led to fundamental changes for all our citizens; fights that made our laws a little more humane; fights that may have created a new job for a mother down on her luck; fights that made schools better; fights that kept mass transit running for people who depend on it; and fights that provided healthcare to children and prescription drugs to seniors who were going without; fights to preserve and improve neighborhoods and their quality of life. And even fights to preserve the arts, culture and the history of Philadelphia.

     On many occasions someone will come up to me and tell me that I made a difference in their life on a particular matter or that I helped a friend or a family member in some way - sometimes I no longer even recall the matter. But whenever that happens I feel a great sense of gratitude to the people of my district who have given me the enormous honor and opportunity to help people - by electing me eight times to serve them in the State Senate.

     Today, I am announcing my retirement. I will not seek another term. At the Governors insistence, I will serve out my current term and help him to the best of my ability on the important issues we both care about -- making life better, more affordable, and safer for the families of our state.

     There are a number of reasons why I have chosen to retire, but above all - I simply donít think it is right for me to ask the voters who have put their faith in me all these years to consider voting for me one more time while there is a cloud hanging over my head. While I am confident voters would have treated me fairly and considered my record above accusations - I simply believe it is time for our district to turn the page and look to new, young leadership.

     Itís hard for me to take this step because I know that I have much more to offer and the urge to continue the fight to help people is still strong. I realize however, that the situation I find myself in makes it difficult for my voice to be heard above the constant chatter about my upcoming trial. I am sorry that is the case.

     Last week as many of you know, I suffered a heart attack. I did not make the decision to retire because of health issues. But I did take time while recovering in the hospital last week to reassess my life and set a few new priorities.

     To be frank, the stress of being under indictment has taken a very real emotional toll, -- a toll that does not afford me the ability to run the kind of campaign I would like to run and would have run in the past.

     Its time now for me to be with true friends and most importantly my family. I love my children and I want them to know while they may not have always come first because of my public service, for the rest of my life they will always come first.

     I want to thank Ed Rendell for standing with me today, for being my friend and sticking with me even though, from time to time, Iíve tested his friendship. I want to thank my current staff members, who are the very best at what they do - improving the quality of life for our constituents. I want to thank the people who have served on my staff over the past three decades who have helped make our office a positive force for our city and state.

     I have been calling colleagues and friends all morning to express my gratitude for their partnership and support over the years. One thing you learn quickly as a legislator is that you canít get things done on your own - it takes teamwork and mutual commitment; you must be honest and keep your word, even if doing so hurts you. I have been fortunate to have stood shoulder to shoulder with some of the most dedicated public servants here and across the state.

     I see so many faces out there in the media who have reported on my legislative successes over the years -- and on occasion - every now and then -- on matters not relating to my legislative successes. We donít always see eye to eye but I do respect the important role you play.

     Finally, I want to thank the people of the First State Senate District for making oursí the best district in all of Pennsylvania. From the children that I meet in our schools to the working men and women who work hard every day to keep their families afloat, to our senior citizens with whom I enjoy such a close relationship. Many of them often tell me great and loving old stories about my parents.

     I will continue to represent you with all the energy God allows me to muster to the very end of my term in office. And to paraphrase one of my heroes, President John F. Kennedy: it is time to pass the torch to a new generation. I hope the person who suceeds me has knowledge, courage and honor, and will continue to represent the people in my district in the same 24/7 manner that I have tried to do.

     God Bless, and thank you for listening today.

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Senator Fumo Announces his intention to retire at the end of the 2008 legislative year, as behind him, (l-r) girlfriend Carolyn Zinni, son Vincent E. Fumo, and Gov. Ed Rendell listen.

 

Fumo says he will end his 30-year Senate career during a press conference at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. Gov. Ed Rendell, standing behind Fumo, then took the podium and praised Fumo for his tremendous accomplishments for Philadelphia and the people of Pennsylvania.