I just read today’s The Back Room column in PolitickerNJ about the special election in LD16 between Marie Corfield and her opponent, Republican quasi-incumbent, Donna Simon, and was particularly incensed when I read the following paragraph:
Two Democratic Party sources told PolitickerNJ.com that Corfield is having trouble raising money from her party, which worries about having to bankroll her re-election next year against a GOP ticket topped by Republican Gov. Chris Christie.
I am not quite sure what aspect of this bothers me more. It is bad enough that there are people within the Democratic establishment who are consciously not supporting Marie Corfield because they don’t want to have to spend money in another legislative district, sending the message to Democrats in Republican districts that our legislative majorities are big enough to accomplish what our party bosses want to do on behalf of our state’s Republican Governor and that their efforts in their districts are neither desired nor welcome, but it is truly reprehensible that there are two unnamed operatives, most likely acting on orders from above, who have no qualms about trying to sabotage Corfield’s impressive grassroots campaign by sending the message that the Democratic Party is not interested in electing her this year or re-electing her next year.
I do not know if others in the Blue Jersey community are as enraged by this as I am, but if you are, I would hope that you will join me in sending a message to NJDSC Chairman, John Wisniewski, that if he does have any gubernatorial ambitions that he wants to be taken seriously by the Blue Jersey community in particular and progressives in general as anything more than the sacrificial lamb candidacy that it appears to be, he should disavow what his operatives told the PolitickerNJ staff and make it his mission over the last few weeks of the campaign to commit NJDSC resources towards and personally solicit every Democratic State Assemblyperson and Democratic State Senator on behalf of the Corfield for Assembly campaign.
I have advocated on numerous occasions for the creation of a New Jersey Progressive Democratic State Committee that mirrors the NJDSC and its county and municipal committees and works towards providing primary election voters with a progressive alternative to establishment Democrats. Any insurgent Democratic gubernatorial candidate is going to need an organization like this behind him or her to have any chance of winning next year’s primary election, especially if their establishment-backed opponent is going to have the party line in 2/3 or more of the state’s 21 counties.
However, this situation clearly illustrates that an organization like this is necessary if not essential for supporting candidates like Marie Corfield in the general election as well since it appears as if the NJDSC has reached the limit of the number of legislative districts in which it wants to compete every two years. In the past, my advocacy for such an organization has been more or less ignored as fellow rank-and-file progressive Democrats and our leaders seem quite content to be disappointed in and dismissed by the Democratic establishment. I hope that this insult to Marie Corfield and her fantastic grassroots campaign, particularly coming on the heels of becoming the top grassroots-powered state race in the country, is the straw that has finally broken the donkey’s back.