As a sign of just how desperate Democrats are getting as they see their majority in the House slipping away, the campaign for New Jersey’s Third Congressional District took a new twist last week.
In acts that have been described as “underhanded”, “deceptive”, and “wholly dishonest”, incumbent Democrat John Adler was caught having planted a fake Tea Party candidate in his race against Jon Runyan. Adler’s campaign operatives orchestrated the idea to get Peter DeStefano on the ballot in an attempt to siphon votes away from Runyan, who polling showed was closing in fast. It also appears that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee may have had a hand as one of the “masterminds” behind this fraud was dispatched from the DCCC to run Adler’s campaign.
Jeopardizing the integrity of the election and undercutting ones constituents shows just how low Democrats have sunk – and John Adler should be ashamed.
With poll numbers tightening and Adler desperate to spin his reckless Washington record to voters, it’s all too clear that he’s willing to lie, cheat and steal in order to save a political career that’s about to come to an end. Be sure to keep an eye on Runyan and the race in NJ-03 over the next 22 days, and check back for any breaking developments.
Original Post: 6/22/2010
Home to some of the most scenic and pristine communities in the mid-Atlantic, New Jersey’s Third District contains parts of Ocean, Burlington, and Camden counties. The seat is consistently competitive – in 2000, Al Gore edged out George Bush, but then Bush topped John Kerry in 2004. Republican Governor Chris Christie won easily here by a margin of 17 percent. As a result, we know that there's an exciting race between John Adler, a career tax-and-spend politician, and Republican outsider Jon Runyan. Runyan is ahead.
Jon Runyan is best known for his time spent in the National Football League as an offensive tackle. His appearances in both the Pro Bowl and Super Bowl may be the highlights of his sports career, but his community engagement is his proudest work off the field. He helps with countless charities, serves as a board member for the Alzheimer’s Association of the Delaware Valley and is a five-time host of his own “Score for the Cure” Golf Tournament, benefiting prostate cancer research in New Jersey. Runyan’s unique work ethic and experiences will present a challenge to incumbent John Adler, who’s helped Speaker Pelosi pass massive spending bills, raise taxes and pile up backbreaking debt.
Though he’s only been in Congress for one term, Adler has continued his partisan and liberal streak that he started as a Trenton politician. He has voted for the trillion-dollar stimulus bill and for tax hikes on his suburban, working-class constituents. His record has shown that his interest is in creating more government, not more jobs.
Adler symbolizes the typical Trenton-insider mentality of cronyism. His time in the state Senate is defined by his ability to secure funding for his home neighborhood of Cherry Hill but only to benefit his wife, who sat on the community council responsible for handling many of these funds. As a result of his actions, Adler was slapped with an ethics complaint.
The voters in New Jersey’s Third District deserve a representative in Congress who’s more interested in improving their communities than with currying political favors and helping party leadership. Adler votes with Speaker Pelosi more than 91% of the time – an obvious point for concern in a district that wants a strong independent voice.
Jon Runyan has made it clear that he will fight to change the culture of more spending and higher taxes in Washington. Adler and Pelosi have tacked on massive debts by pushing their partisan agenda, but few keen observers should be surprised: Adler did the same during his time in the New Jersey Senate, where he sided with then-governor Jon Corzine to raise taxes over and over again.
The GOP is excited about taking this district – which has a Cook PVI rating of R+1 – back this fall. The NRCC has placed Jon Runyan in its Young Guns program as an On the Radar candidate, indicating that he has taken the first steps in establishing a strong campaign infrastructure.