In the short, hot-weather sprint that is the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate, some endorsements are obvious, some surprising. Few are newsworthy. This one might be. Frank Lautenberg’s family has picked their choice to fill their late father and husband’s seat: Frank Pallone. It’s inside baseball, but that may not matter. Only the most active and in-tune Democrats will even be voting in an August primary anyway. Will this move them from frontrunner Cory Booker? Will this help them distinguish Pallone from his progressive brother in the House, Rush Holt? Here’s what they say:
We are saying: Stick with Frank.
Frank Pallone, like Frank Lautenberg, has always looked out for working families in New Jersey and made them his top priority – in fighting for economic justice, healthcare reform, environmental protection, education and so many other issues.
Frank Pallone, like our Frank, will put in the hours and hard work necessary to fight for New Jersey in the Senate. And Frank Pallone knows that gimmicks and celebrity status won’t get you very far in the real battles that Democrats face in the future.
Frank Pallone worked with Frank Lautenberg for many years. He understands what it takes to take on and defeat Republicans and the special interests that attack the well being of working families. While it may not always attract glamorous headlines, Frank knows that to be effective you must put New Jersey and your principles first, not your own glory.
Many of the Lautenbergs spoke at his memorial; the most memorable – funny, specific, personal – eulogy from his son Josh (C-SPAN at the 1:00:45 mark), who owns a business in Colorado, and who clearly has some of the basic building blocks of a politician himself.
The qualities the Lautenbergs say they like about Pallone are the ones they admired in the late Senator: (1) stay true to his progressive values (2) put New Jersey first (3) be a workhorse, not a showhorse.