Jersey City and Hoboken Democrats lent their weight to change the dynamics of representation in Congress by fundraising for Mikie Sherrill, a House candidate for New Jersey’s 11’s legislative district, in two separate events last night.
The district, which covers 54 municipalities in the four counties of Morris, Essex, Passaic and Sussex, has been in Republican hands since 1985 and incumbent Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-11) has held the seat since 1995.
Her first stop was at South House in Jersey City last night where she was introduced by Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, who stressed that New Jersey will be ground zero for Democrats in the November 6th elections to take back the House.
“Let’s not take this for granted. New Jersey is ground zero for taking back the House. We have a lot of seats that are in play here, so it’s important that we support them, we donate and we don’t take it for granted even the ones that we know we have the better candidate,” said Fulop.
He then took aim at her Republican opponent, Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-26), by saying that he is too far right in his politics for New Jersey.
“The person that she is running against is proudly as conservative as they come, and most of the candidates that are in these swing districts they shy away from some of the President’s policies,” Fulop began.
“But Jay Webber who she’s running against doesn’t do that. He’s proudly situated where he is as far right and out of touch with New Jersey as possible. It is important that this district goes blue.”
Sherrill followed up Fulop’s criticisms of Webber by saying that his time in the Assembly illustrates that he would not be an effective federal lawmaker for District 11.
“I can’t leave without telling you just a little bit about my opponent, I would be remiss because he’s not the kind of guy that reaches across the aisle. In fact, in 2012 he was voted the least effective legislator because he didn’t get any of his legislation passed because he doesn’t work with anybody,” Sherrill said.
“He was one of the only few people to vote against equal pay for women, and he was the only person in the Assembly to vote against providing health insurance for people with opioid addiction.”
She then attended a fundraiser organized by the Hoboken Democratic Party at the Antique Loft, which organizers said raised over $10,000 for her campaign (Jersey City Democratic Organization officials indicated that raised $10,000 as well).
In a one-on-one interview, Sherrill expressed her opinion about whether the election of Democratic nominees such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a self-proclaimed Democratic Socialist, will either help or hurt Democrats to take back Congress in November.
“I think the Democratic Party is a big-tent party and we take a lot of ideas,” she said off the bat.
“But what I have seen across the nation and the kind of the larger narrative in our party is all the veterans that are running across the country, all the people that want to fight hard for our values and make sure we are protecting middle-class families because I’ve been listening to people throughout the district for over a year now and it’s just very hard to make ends meet here in New Jersey for our middle-class families.”
In response, Webber campaign spokesman Harrison Neely was not impressed with what Sherrill or her “far-left cocoon” had to say.
“These kinds of hyper-partisan attacks from Mikie Sherrill as she sits in her far-left cocoon are the exact type of DC style politics that people hate. Here are the facts: Jay has a strong record of working across the aisle. Just this year he authored and passed the landmark law that kept sexual predators out of our children’s schools, and worked with members of both parties to increase funding and support for battered women’s shelters,” he wrote in an email.
” … One of the biggest problems with Mikie Sherrill is that she will stand against the President 100% of the time, even when policy proposals are worthy of support, based purely on her hyper-partisan ideology. Voters will see that and reject Sherrill in November.”
Editor’s note: This story was updated with a comment from the Webber campaign.