By John Burton
ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS – Republican candidate for Senate Steve Lonegan concluded a long day of campaigning on Monday evening with a stop in the borough, expressing his optimism for the outcome for tomorrow’s special election.
Lonegan appeared at the Shore Casino catering facility, located in the municipal harbor, meeting with about 30 local GOP officials, candidates and supporters, including Republican Mayor Frederick Rast III, who spent the day around the state with the candidate.
Lonegan touted his achievement of closing the polling gap between himself and his Democratic opponent, Newark Mayor Cory Booker, saying the numbers have narrowed from about 35 points when this abbreviated campaign for the Oct. 16 election began to the low double digits now. The latest Monmouth University poll shows Booker with a 10-point lead over Lonegan.
Lonegan said the election is a referendum on President Barrack Obama and “an explosion of government like we’ve never seen before,” particularly the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare. The self-styled political and social conservative, who was the former Bogota mayor, said, his victory on Wednesday “will reignite the conservative movement started by Ronald Reagan.”
The winner of Wednesday’s election will go on to serve the remaining year in the term of U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg, long-serving Democrat, who died in June.