Faced with Booker’s crime reform proposal, Lonegan focuses on adversary’s crime-fighting record

Steve Lonegan, Republican candidate for the United States Senate, today upbraided Newark Mayor Cory Booker for trying to change the subject away from what Lonegan said is the Democrat’s awful crime fighting record on the streets of Booker’s home city.

Booker delivered an address this morning in Jersey City, targeting criminal justice system reform as a major part of his platform in the U.S. Senate contest.

Lonegan wasn’t impressed.

“Mayor Booker has failed to control the crime epidemic that has plagued his city,” the Republican said. “Violent crime continues to surge in Newark, as illustrated by three more fatal shootings between Monday night and Tuesday afternoon. Meanwhile, the mayor attempts to shift the focus away from his failed record with his news conference today.”

General election adversaries Lonegan and Booker have been in the midst of another tilt over the last number of hours after the former mayor of Bogota called discussions of Booker’s possible homosexuality “weird,” drawing ire from Democrats in protection mode around their U.S. Senate candidate.

But Lonegan tried to keep his focus on a longtime campaign complaint: Booker’s record. 

“Since becoming mayor, violent crime is up, and that trend will continue with the Mayor’s decision to make Newark the only city in New Jersey where illegal alien criminals will be given sanctuary status and kept from deportation,” Lonegan said. “Mayor Booker’s policy of classifying vandalism, shoplifting and other personal property crimes as ‘minor’ shows exactly why he has been unable to reduce crime.”

"The governor still has to come to bat."
—Atlantic County Executive Dennis Levinson, on Atlantic City.