Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) is up with a new TV ad today that hits his opponent, former State Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean Jr. (R-Westfield), on a lot of familiar themes: abortion, prescription drug costs, and Donald Trump.
Script: (Narrator): “Tom Kean Jr.: 20 years in Trenton, 20 years of failure. We pay the price. Kean voted against middle-class property tax relief; against lower prescription costs for seniors; against a woman’s right to choose. It’s that simple. Now Kean’s bragging he’s with Trump, no matter what. Simple: higher costs, fewer rights, more MAGA. Makes your decision really simple.”
“Tom Kean Jr.’s 20-year record in Trenton is a record of failure and it won’t change in Washington,” Malinowski campaign manager Brooke Zindulka said in a statement accompanying the ad. “He will increase your cost of living, side with Big Pharma, and take away a woman’s right to choose. The facts are simple and the choice is really simple. Tom Kean Jr. is for MAGA. Tom Malinowski is for New Jersey.”
Malinowski has hit Kean on abortion many times before today; Kean labels himself pro-choice, but when he was in the legislature he voted against a bill codifying Roe v. Wade into state law, a vote Malinowski has repeatedly excoriated. Mentions of Trump are also not new to the 7th district, as Malinowski made the now-former president a cornerstone of his 2020 campaign against Kean.
Though it doesn’t appear in the script itself, the ad visually connects Kean to another unpopular figure in New Jersey: former Gov. Chris Christie. Kean and Christie were not exactly political allies, but Malinowski’s campaign uses a photo of the two men embracing to drive home Kean’s long tenure in Trenton.
While Malinowski has emphasized abortion and Trump, Kean has run a heavily inflation-focused campaign, tapping into voters’ concerns over rising costs. The 7th district grew more Republican in redistricting and Republicans have led in most recent national polls, which likely makes Kean the favorite to win.