"In societies where Robbing Hoods are treated like a celebrity it is but natural to expect political parties to act like a Mafia syndicate" Political Jaywalker "In a nation where corruption is endemic people tend to confuse due process with aiding and abetting criminals" Political Jaywalker "War doesn't determine who is right, war determines who is left" Bertrand Russell "You have just one flash flood of money, you keep your people poor. It's like a time bomb and it's scary" Philippine Lawmaker

Second Fil-Am elected to US Congress

Steven "Steve" Austria, a Republican second termer in the Ohio Senate, won a seat in the US Congress in the November elections to become the second US congressman of Philippine heritage. He ran against Democratic challenger Sharen Neuhardt for Ohio's 7th congressional district replacing Congressman Dave Hobson who retired. Previously was a member of the Ohio House of Representatives from 1998 until 2000.

According to the Internet's Wikipedia Austria was born in Cincinnati and grew up in Xenia, the eldest of nine children. A report by Joseph Lariosa of GMA News says that his father, the late Dr. Clement G. Austria, a native of Tiaong, Quezon, was a guerrilla under (American) Gen. Douglas MacArthur while studying medicine at the University of Santo Tomas during World War II. He later moved to Ohio to further his medical studies.

"When he was still very young," Lariosa reported, "Steve went to the Philippines three times in 1960 and 1961 and spent six weeks in the Philippines shortly after graduating from high school.

"Yahoo News quoted Austria's staff saying that he will be the first Filipino-American to serve in Congress. Actually Rep. Bob Scott, also of American and Filipino stock, is ahead of him in the country's legislature. Asianjournal online reported earlier that Scott is a grandson of Filipino Valentin Cortez who, as a boy, stowed away on board a US-bound ship. The Columbus Dispatch credits Austria's "reputation as a solid state lawmaker who's able to work with Democrats." -- By Dionesio C. Grava

NOTE: Photo of Rep. Steve Austria is from his campaign website

Dionesio C. Grava - Community journalist based in Los Angeles. Member of New America Media, Society of Professional Journalists, and Society of Environmental Journalists, among others.

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