North-JerseyNews.com

North-JerseyNews.Com’s Weekly Campaign Notebook For May 29

As we get closer to the June 8 primary election, North-JerseyNews.com will post a weekly notebook of press releases produced by the candidates.

Governor

A new PPP poll commissioned by the Democratic Governors Association shows a tight race in the New Jersey GOP primary. Jack Ciattarelli holds a narrow six-point lead over Hirsh Singh in what has turned into a messy name-calling brawl. 

The poll shows that former President Donald Trump maintains a tight hold on the New Jersey GOP base. Eighty one percent of likely Republican primary voters want a candidate who embraces Trump’s agenda, and 87% hold a favorable view of the former president.

Trump’s grip is also evident through the widespread strength of conspiracy theories among the base. In the Garden State, 73% of Republican likely voters believe that the January 6 insurrection was a false flag operation organized by groups opposed to Trump. Seventy one percent don’t believe President Joe Biden was the legitimate winner of the 2020 presidential election and 69% say that the coronavirus pandemic was exaggerated by liberals seeking to undermine Trump’s presidency.

This dynamic has dictated the course of the primary. Singh has unapologetically tied himself to the former president while Ciattarelli is embracing Trump as the “standard-bearer” of the party and adopting his far-right approach to campaigning.

***

Philip Rizzo has challenged Jack Ciattarelli to a debate. 

Rizzo stated “A debate between myself and Jack would expose him as a phony conservative.  I don’t anticipate him answering the challenge, because debating a true conservative will show his liberal record. Jack would have to answer for his past opposition to gun rights and Hurricane Sandy relief, and he would have to answer for his support of physician assisted suicide and free tuition for illegal immigrants.”

Rizzo concluded by saying; “Jack claims that Hirsh is hiding from him.   I say Jack is hiding from me. Step up to the plate Jack. Let’s debate.”

***

Statement by Murphy for Governor Campaign Manager Mollie Binotto on Republican Primary Debate

“Beneath all the name-calling, Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli and Hirsh Singh agreed on one thing: they want to drag New Jersey backwards. Their divisive rhetoric, politically motivated lies about the pandemic, and failure to denounce extremism disqualifies either candidate from being governor. New Jerseyans deserve far better than an anti-science Trump-like sideshow. When they’re not using conspiracy theories and dog-whistles to rile up the far-right base, the Republican candidates are touting out-of-touch positions that would hurt New Jersey families.

“No matter which candidate passes the Trump litmus test, the Republican nominee will be too extreme for New Jersey. Governor Murphy emerged as the clear winner of tonight’s debate, as he continues to build broad support for his unifying and inclusive vision for New Jersey’s future.”

***

The SEIU NJ State Council endorses the reelection of Gov. Phil Murphy and Lt. Governor Sheila Oliver.

The pair have provided steadfast and effective leadership during a trying time and the State Council encourages its membership to support the ticket in both the June 8 Democratic Primary and in the General Election on November 2.

We have made significant progress during Governor Murphy’s first administration on issues important to our members. Those include expanded family leave benefits, earned sick leave, collective bargaining, a phase-in of the $15 minimum wage, making driver’s licenses available for all immigrants living in New Jersey and safe staffing ratios for nursing homes. 

The governor’s budget reflects priorities shared by SEIU members and provides full funding for the state pension fund and additional resources for nursing homes and other health care facilities.

We trust that in a second term the Murphy administration will make good on its promise that working families will participate fully in and reap the benefits of the state’s economic recovery from the pandemic.

“Governor Murphy has been a strong ally for working New Jerseyans throughout his first term. We appreciate his support on critical healthcare issues, including improving staffing levels in nursing homes.  We trust that his administration will continue the process of enacting long-overdue reforms to protect patients and their caregivers,” said Milly Silva, President of the State Council and Executive Vice President of 1199SEIU United Health Care Workers East.

The governor was “enthusiastically pro union” and enacted policies that significantly improved the lives of hundreds of thousands of workers during his first term, said Megan Chambers, Vice-President of the State Council.

 “We look forward to Governor Murphy’s continued support and leadership on a host of issues, including fair wages and working conditions for our public employees and the growing legions of workers now employed by private warehouse operators in New Jersey,” said Chambers, who is Co-Manager of the Laundry, Distribution and Food Service (LDFS) Joint Board, Workers United, SEIU.

State Senate and Assembly

Danielle Gee, a member of the Teaneck Board of Education who broke the town record for the most votes in any Teaneck municipal election ever last year, has endorsed Valerie Vainieri Huttle, Gervonn Romney Rice and Lauren Kohn Dayton for State Senate and Assembly in District 37.

Gee issued the following statement in support of Huttle and her slate:

“Recently many have asked me who I plan to support in the NJ District 37 legislative race. My philosophy has always been to support the candidate who will be the strongest advocate for me, my immediate family, my Teaneck family and more broadly all NJ residents. Over the past few weeks, I have taken the time to do some additional research on all of the candidates and given what I have learned, the choice is clear. I am proud to offer my support and commitment to ensure that Valerie Vainieri Huttle is our district’s next State Senator.”

“Valerie’s record speaks for itself: she has been a champion for women’s rights, a stout advocate for working families, the voice for adults and children with disabilities, a strong supporter of gun violence prevention and so much more. But it’s about more than her record. I stand with Valerie because her story is one that I’ve heard before, and experienced first-hand. How many times are strong, bright, passionate, qualified women told to “wait your turn?” – even when they have better credentials and a stronger resume. I received the same pushback when I ran for the Teaneck Board of Education. “Wait your turn”, they said. “You haven’t met with the right people”, they said. Like Valerie, I said, “No” and took my message directly to the people of Teaneck. Our residents spoke loud and clear with their votes. Three shy of 11,000 voters stood behind me on November 3rd last year. Now, we have more work to do. On June 8th, I’m calling on all of you to speak again with your votes. Join me in supporting Valerie Vaineiri Huttle for NJ District 37 State Senate.”

“I also want to support Valerie’s slate members, Gervonn Romney Rice and Lauren Dayton for Assembly. As a Teaneck Board of Education member and parent of three children in the school district, I can not emphasize enough the importance of having someone from Teaneck represent us in the legislature. Gervonn has a proven track record of community service and leadership in Teaneck, both as a Councilwoman and Board of Education member. With Senator Loretta Weinberg’s departure from public service, we must support Gervonn so that Teaneck has a strong voice in the state legislature. Lauren rounds out this power-house team as an ivy-league graduate, seasoned attorney and Tenafly Councilwoman. I am so excited to support these rockstar women leaders on June 8th and I hope you all will join me.”

***

New Jersey League of Conservation Voters, the political voice for the environment, today announced their second round of endorsements for the 2021 New Jersey legislative elections – with an additional slate of pro-conservation candidates to follow. New Jersey LCV works to elect viable candidates, without regard to party affiliation, who have demonstrated an active or affirmative willingness and capacity to advance New Jersey LCV’s pro-environment priorities.

“One thing is for sure, climate action, environmental justice, and good, local clean energy jobs are on the ballot,” said Henry Gajda, Public Policy Director, New Jersey LCV. “We could not be prouder of the dedicated, pro-conservation leaders featured in our second round of legislative endorsements and look forward to electing them to office and working together to build a more equitable and sustainable future for our children and grandchildren.”

New Jersey LCV has endorsed the following Democratic candidates for the Primary Election on June 8 and the General Election on November 2nd:

  • 27th Legislative District: State Senator Richard Codey, Assemblywoman Mila Jasey and Assemblyman John McKeon 
  • 33rd Legislative District: Assemblyman Raj Mukherji
  • 34th Legislative District: Assemblyman Thomas Giblin and Assemblywoman Britnee Timberlake 
  • 35th Legislative District: Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly 
  • 36th Legislative District: Assemblyman Clinton Calabrese 
  • 37th Legislative District: Gordon Johnson for State Senate along with Shama Haider and Ellen Park for State Assembly

***

New Jersey Tenants Organization, New Jersey’s oldest and largest organization dedicated to protecting the rights of tenants, has endorsed Valerie Vainieri Huttle for State Senate in the District 37 Primary.

“Valerie Vainieri Huttle has been on the side of protecting and advancing the civil rights of tenants whenever we have needed her help.” said Matt Shapiro, President of the New Jersey Tenants Organization “We recognize that we are not unique, Vainieri Huttle has fought for the rights of every group that has suffered from discrimination and oppression – tenants, women, people of color, victims of domestic violence and more. This is why we are proud to endorse Vainieri Huttle, we all need her voice in the New Jersey Senate.”

In her capacity as Assemblywoman, Vainieri Huttle has championed legislation to expand access to affordable housing and protect tenants from discrimination, she has also been at the forefront of fighting for lead abatement to keep New Jersey’s families safe. Vainieri Huttle has dedicated her career to fighting for underserved communities, authoring landmark laws to protect marginalized communities and expand their rights under the law.

Local

Former Governor and current State Sen. Richard Codey threw his support behind Sheriff Armando Fontoura by endorsing him in his bid for re-election as Essex County Sheriff.

Fontoura, a career law enforcement officer, was first elected as Sheriff in 1990. Since then, he has led the largest and most active Sheriff’s Department in New Jersey, serving the County and the state’s largest Superior Court vicinage. As Sheriff, he directs the county-wide Bureau of Narcotics, the multi-disciplined K9 and bomb squad, and serves as Essex County’s Office of Emergency Management Coordinator.  Fontoura has been a driving force in Essex County’s Covid-19 Response, overseeing development and security of Covid testing facilities, designing a state-of-the-art contact tracing unit, and building a specialized vaccine rollout task-force.

“Sheriff Fontoura is totally dedicated to serving the people of Essex County. I have been at social events with the sheriff when he has gotten a call and has to run off immediately to attend to an emergency,” said Codey. “The safety and security of our county is his first priority. I’ll also tell you, if you ever play golf with him, never take your eyes off him, and make sure you are standing behind him when he hits.”

“Throughout my time working in public service, there have been few people I encountered that are as dedicated to our community as Governor Codey. Whether he is fighting for equality through his work in Trenton, helping his neighbors through community service, or preaching the benefits of strong mental health, Governor Codey is a strong leader and consummate professional,” said Sheriff Fontoura. “His passion and dedication to fight for Essex County and the State of New Jersey serves as a constant reminder of what we should all strive for as public servants, and I’m thrilled to receive the endorsement from the former Governor.”

***

The New Jersey Department of State and Division of Elections are providing several helpful resources, including a dedicated website, Vote.NJ.Gov, and a toll-free help line, 1-877-NJ-Voter (1-877-658-6837) to assist voters in preparation for the upcoming June 8 primary election.

“We want to be sure voters know the resources available to them as well as the key deadlines ahead of the upcoming elections,” said New Jersey Secretary of State Tahesha Way. “From information on how to vote in person, where to find secure ballot drop box locations or how to apply for a vote-by-mail ballot, we’re making it as easy as possible for voters to exercise their right to participate in this important process.”

Registered voters can vote in person at their local polling place from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on June 8.

Voters should know to:

  • Visit Vote.NJ.Gov to check their registration status.
  • Find their current polling location using Vote.NJ.Gov’s polling location tool and decide whether they will vote in person or request a vote-by-mail ballot.
  • Request a vote-by-mail ballot if they need or prefer to vote from home in the upcoming election. If a voter does not apply, they will not automatically receive a vote-by-mail  ballot to participate. Any registered New Jersey voter can choose to request a vote-by-mail ballot using one of the following methods:
  • Go to the Vote By Mail page on Vote.NJ.Gov to download and print an application for vote-by-mail ballot. Then, mail or deliver the completed application to the appropriate local County Clerk. To be sent a ballot by mail for the June 8 primary election, the application must be received by June 1.
  • Apply in person at a voter’s local County Clerk by 3:00 p.m. on June 7 for the June 8 primary election. Find the contact details at Vote.NJ.Gov.

Returning a vote-by-mail ballot is once again as easy as VOTE, SIGN, SEAL, RETURN. Return options include:

  • Mail: It must be postmarked on or before 8:00 p.m. on June 8 and received by June 14.
  • Secure Ballot Drop Box: Place it in one of their county’s secure ballot drop boxes in use by 8:00 p.m. June 8 for the primary election. Drop box locations can be found at Vote.NJ.Gov.
  • Board of Elections Office: Deliver in person to the county Board of Elections by 8:00 p.m. June 8 for the primary election.
  • NOTE: Vote-by-mail ballots CANNOT be returned to polling places for this election.

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