Insider NJ

New Jersey Citizen Action Statement On Ousting Of Republican Congressman Leonard Lance, Victory Of Tom Malinowski

Insider NJ — November 6, 2018

Highland Park — Following the defeat of Republican Congressman Leonard Lance (NJ-7th) and the victory of Democrat Tom Malinowski, New Jersey Citizen Action released the following statement:

"This election was a referendum on the destructive policies of the Trump administration and the GOP," said Dena Mottola Jaborska, associate director of New Jersey Citizen Action. "Leonard Lance did not stand up to Trump and party leaders, and the people of Congressional District 7 have sent a clear message that they want a representative who will."

NJCA conducted a six-week voter education and get-out-the-vote effort in partnership with NJ 7 Forward that centered on women's issues and Lance's failure to represent women and their key concerns. The When Women Vote We Win project (We Win) was powered by hundreds of women who door knocked, wrote postcards, called and texted other women voters in the district about Lance's disappointing record on women's issues, and urged them to replace Lance with Democrat Tom Malinowski. This outreach effort resulted in 26,000 direct conversations with women voters in the district and it reached another 150,000 with local ads highlighting Lance's dismal voting record.

"We've seen ten years of failed leadership under Leonard Lance on issues of high importance and priority for women," said Neena Singh of STAND Central New Jersey. "And after the 2016 elections everything has gotten worse, inspiring women like me to join the Women's March and mobilize other women around our causes. We knew we needed a Congressperson and a House that supports women. So we held postcard parties, made phone calls, texted and canvassed for a candidate we knew would work to address the concerns and issues of Congressional District 7 voters. We are ecstatic that Tom is our new Congressman!"

Since the Election of Donald Trump there has been a ground swell of activism from women, in the 7th Congressional District and elsewhere on issues such as health care, guns, reproductive rights as well as workplace and quality of life issues that touch women particularly, such as equal pay, affordable child care and paid family leave.

"I felt compelled to reach out to other women and other voters this election. The only way to stop attacks on our rights, healthcare, and other issues important to our families and communities is to work together, become active fighting for a better world together, and to vote!" said Elizabeth Lewandowski of Whitehouse Station who hosted a postcard party last week and has been a consistent activist leader in the fight to defend the ACA.

New Jersey Citizen Action organized thousands of women to attend Women's Marches in Washington, DC and New Jersey over the past two years, sending 13 full buses to Washington in 2017. The group led the effort to defend the Affordable Care Act from Republican repeal efforts, which helped ignite and fuel the grassroots movement against Trump and GOP representatives like Lance.

Throughout 2017 and early 2018, NJCA led weekly protests outside all New Jersey's Republican congressmen's offices, including both Leonard Lance's offices in Westfield and Flemington. As part of the effort, the group took a bus trip to Washington DC with 50 activists in July 2017 right before the final vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Together with local groups, NJCA also generated sustained pressure on Lance to oppose repeal through phone calls, frequent office drop-ins and actions inside and outside his Town Hall meetings.

"The exciting election of Tom Malinowski today is the result of over two years of activism," said Margaret Illis, co-founder and Leader of NJ 7 Forward. "We met in small and large groups, attended the Women's Marches. We pressured Lance at Town Halls, by phone and email, in-person and at weekly protests. Women are the fuel and the drivers of this effort, we translated that energy into action. Through phone calls, rallies, coffees, postcards texts and canvassing women have worked tirelessly to elect Tom and get better representation in the House."


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