Arrived in our inbox this morning, the below. I think they’re trying to tell supporters where Gottheimer’s GOP opponent will be this weekend, so fans come out and meet him. But this kind of reads like a campaign announcement of a Republican challenge from the far-right sputtering to an end.
Now, while I’m on the subject of Lonegan … Over in FacebookLand, a commenter (I won’t name, but a Dem) asks how Lonegan can even serve in Congress … because he’s visually impaired. Well, that’s true; he was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa at 14 and started going blind in his 20s. When he campaigns and works, people help him navigate; he seems to make it around OK. About 1 in 5 Americans has a disability (Census). If we want our reps to be like us, that’s going to mean sending some up who aren’t white males in tip-top condition; that only gets you Paul Ryan. I’m kidding. But here’s who’s already serving (or served) in Washington, getting get around, doing jobs, having lives just like people who aren’t in Congress; Rep. Tammy Duckworth (legs blown off, RPM strike in Iraq), Sen. John McCain (limited use of arms, POW in Vietnam), Max Cleland (triple amputee, grenade blast in Vietnam), Sen. Bob Dole (useless arm, WWII), President Woodrow Wilson of New Jersey (partial paralysis, stroke), FDR (wheelchair, polio). You get the idea.
No, blindness – at least that kind – isn’t the reason Steve Lonegan shouldn’t get to Congress, same as size wasn’t the reason Chris Christie was a lousy governor. No, keep Steve Lonegan out of Congress because he calls people things like “fundamentalist faggot piece of shit” – so he’s clearly not equipped to serve all the residents of CD5. Keep him out because when Tom Moran says CD5 shouldn’t have two homophobic Republicans running in a row and Lonegan should quit, he calls Star-Ledger, where Moran works as editorial page editor, communist (that old boogey-man, he likes to go there). Because he serves the Koch Brothers and pushes policy bad for us, and lucrative for them. Because he runs for everything, like an opportunist. Because he lapses to juvenile behavior. That’s the kind of “blindness” you keep people out of Congress for. Not so much the other kind.