A former Hainesport mayor who was ousted in a primary after using a coarse internet meme that disparaged women has announced that he will run for Congress against freshman Rep. Andy Kim (D-Marlton) in New Jersey’s 3rd district.
Anthony Porto II faced intense criticism in 2016 when he posted a meme on his Facebook page showing Kermit the Frog drinking from a bottle and saying, “Aww, you’re spreading rumors about me. At least you found a hobby spreading something other than your legs bitch.”
Porto apologized at the slur, which appeared to be aimed at Anna Evans, a Democratic candidate for township committee.
In June 2017, Porto and running mate Michael Dickinson were defeated for renomination in the Republican primary by challengers Lee Schneider and Ted Costa. Porto lost the primary by a near 2-1 margin.
Porto is the third Republican to enter the race against Kim.
Burlington County Republicans have already voted to award their organization line to Kate Gibbs, a former freeholder and Operating Engineers Local 825 official.
Barnaget Township Mayor John Novak, who took office yesterday, is also seeking the Republican congressional nomination.
Porto did not screen in Burlington.
Porto, the Hainesport Republican municipal chairman, backed Jason Huf for State Assembly in the 8th district GOP primary last year. Huf finished a distant fourth behind winners Ryan Peters (R-Hainesport) and Jean Stanfield (R-Westampton), and far behind incumbent Joe Howarth (R-Evesham).
A former school board member, he served four terms as a township committeeman before his primary defeat.