Last night I made volunteer-to-volunteer calls for Peter Jacob for Congress at the Hunterdon Democratic HQ in Flemington with a bunch of my friends. I was really glad to see how many voters I called for him responded with a strong YES when I asked if Peter had their vote, and I recruited several people on those calls to join us calling and door-knocking for Peter. I was calling Dems and unaffiliateds. They knew Peter’s name, and they’re ready for a change from Leonard Lance, now running for his fifth House term. I’ve been very involved with every CD7 Democratic challenger race here since 2006 (and before that in CD12 for my old boss Rep. Rush Holt before redistricting). Peter has a very uphill race against the entrenched and increasingly right-winger Lance has become. This year, much of the focus and Democratic resources have flowed to CD5 and the very promising effort to topple Scott Garret by a Clinton-connected, skillful and well-funded challenger Josh Gottheimer. But here in CD7, the work goes on. And on.
Peter is an honorable, intelligent man and a mensch; a social worker with a track record of contributing his time and skills to this community. He says that he’s running to return to the ideals of American icons like Teddy or Franklin Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, and John F. Kennedy; and to join people together in reclaiming democracy and returning the voice of the people to Congress. I see in him much of what I find inspiring in younger progressives; a sense of responsibility that extends beyond family and home, a strong bend towards equality and justice, an ingrained altruism. And it’s been a hard couple of weeks; following a right-wing blog post that criticized Peter for making the connection that the Orlando Pulse Club massacre connects to homophobia, and two incidents where vandals painted swastikas outside, and then on his home. Peter and his family have been made targets by precisely the kind of racism that used to be forced underground, and is now unleashed by the likes of the Republican presidential candidate at the top of Lance’s ticket. So, I want to do what I can to help him get his message out. Here’s a web ad the campaign made from Peter.