Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, with the aid of the local Democratic organization, fundraised around $10,000 for 4th district congressional candidate Josh Welle at the South House Bar and Restaurant last night.
“I’m grateful for Mayor Fulop: there will be more of these to come. Your leadership in a blue city, our leadership in a blue state, will move this country towards a place of unity, on progress, on equality, of justice,” Welle told a room of about 100 people.
Welle, who scored nearly 17,000 votes when he secured the Democratic congressional nomination in the June 5th primary, has a tough opponent in U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-4): a very rarely seen 19-term incumbent.
In a short interview with Hudson County View, Fulop said that he feels flipping the house is a cause that all Democrats should be getting involved in, regardless of where the district lines are drawn.
“Josh is in a targeted district, he’s a fellow veteran: smart, capable, dynamic, in a district that we’re gonna win, turn blue, and change the direction of the country. We’re lucky to have a guy like Josh running and Jersey City wanted to be helpful and we’re here tonight showing our support.”
Welle said that his opponent is living in the past and has shown to be way out of touch with his constituents.
“Right now, we’re running against a guy that’s been in office for 38 years. He takes us backwards on women’s reproductive rights, he doesn’t believe gay rights are human rights, he doesn’t do anything for the Central Jersey economy: those sort of out of touch extremists shouldn’t be in Congress in 2018,” Welle exclaimed.
The Smith campaign could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.
As of May 16th, Welle had about $143,364 on hand as of May 16th, while Smith had $48,646 as of March 31st, both the latest figures available from the Federal Election Commission.
However, Smith did not face a Republican challenger in the June primary so did not need to fundraise aggressively earlier in the year.
While Democrats have been impressed with Welle’s efforts this far, the Cook Political Report still lists New Jersey’s 4th congressional district as “solidly Republican.”
Other officials in attendance included Hudson County Democratic Organization Chair Amy DeGise, JCDO Chair Barbara Stamato, Jersey City council members Mira Prinz-Arey and James Solomon and Hoboken 2nd Ward Councilwoman Tiffanie Fisher, among many others.