Altman Blames South Jersey Democratic Machine for Van Drew Debacle

A number of liberal groups rallied outside the Statehouse in support of raising income taxes on millionaires. Though Gov. Phil Murphy supports a millionaire's tax and polls show a majority of voters do as well, Senate President Steve Sweeney does not, even though he voted for it during Chris Christie's administration.

New Jersey Working Families State Director Sue Altman issued a statement this afternoon in response to reports about the imminent defection of U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew from the Democratic Party.

“No one who knows Jeff Van Drew’s career is surprised by today’s party switch. Everyone in New Jersey politics was fully aware Van Drew has, for decades, been a Republican disguised as a Democrat. As a ‘Democrat,’ Van Drew has a 100% rating from the NRA, voted against marriage equality, and even championed a tax cut for yacht owners.   

“This is a direct result of the South Jersey Democratic machine’s power- a machine that engineered Van Drew’s rise knowing his values were out of step with the party. Democratic boss and Mar-A-Lago member George Norcross groomed Van Drew from township committee to Freeholder to State Senate to Congress. 

“Norcross was responsible for Van Drew’s ascent, and we should blame him for Van Drew’s defection to Trump as well. This is also a black eye for the DCCC and the County Party Chairs in South Jersey, who backed Van Drew against primary opponents who might have actually behaved like Democrat.

“It’s clear that the Democratic establishment can’t deliver the leadership South Jersey needs. Fortunately, there’s a growing army of grassroots activists ready to roll up their sleeves and take back New Jersey from the Republicans and the Democrats who act like them.”

The Washington Post today reported – and a source on the ground confirmed – that U.S. Rep. Jeff Van Drew (D-2) is poised to become a Republican.

This from the Post: “President Trump on Friday personally urged a vocally anti-impeachment Democrat, Rep. Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, to switch parties — a request he is now believed to be strongly considering.”

The full story – complete with toughened language which makes it appear all but inevitable that the congressman intends to change party affiliation – can be found here.

Van Drew was one of two Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives to oppose pursuing articles of impeachment against the President.

The congressman subsequently faced the possible withdrawal of establishment Democratic Party support if he moved ahead with voting no impeachment. Several Democrats have stepped forward and shown interest in running against him if he decides to oppose the impeachment of Trump.

The district itself leans Republican, and Van Drew lost his former Democratic running mates this year as they tried to carry on without him in the 1st Legislative District.

This past week he said he does indeed intend to vote against impeaching Trump, which hastened the President’s efforts to pull Van Drew into the Republican Party.

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  • none

    Sue Altman is a person with all the questions and no answers. A one trick anti-Norcross person who just blames but does nothing to improve things. Her involvement? professional protestor.

    Ms. Altman…put your name on the ballot.

    • Jay Levin

      Altman has done that. What a stupid comment.

  • jeff s

    So Van Drew took money from the DCCC and repays them with this? Maybe Trump is depositing money in his bank account.

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