Senate Minority Leader Thomas Kean, Jr. (R-Westfield) opposed legislation that would codify the right to an abortion in New Jersey on Monday, a vote that the Democratic congressman he wants to unseat says he’ll use in his re-election bid in the 7th district this year.
“It’s great that New Jersey has codified reproductive rights into state law, in case the Supreme Court reverses Roe v. Wade this year,” said Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) on Twitter. “And we’ll remember that in one of his last votes after 20 years in Trenton, (Tom Kean) voted to leave NJ women unprotected”
Malinowski announced today that he was running for a third term in a district that became better for Republicans under a new map approved last month. Kean came within one percent of unseating Malinowski in 2020 and has given up his Senate seat to focus a rematch.
Kean was one of 15 senators – all Republicans – who voted against a pared-down version of the Reproductive Freedom Act that will make access to abortion a guaranteed right under state law.
Another candidate for the GOP House nomination, Assemblyman Erik Peterson (R-Franklin), also voted against the bill.
In the 2020 congressional race, Malinowski aired a TV ad alleging that Kean voted to restrict abortions in 2006 and refused to oppose Gov. Chris Christie’s decision to strip the state budget of funding for Planned Parenthood.
A spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, James Singer, slammed the GPP candidates for their votes.
“As states across the country pass dangerous abortion bans and the Supreme Court considers overturning Roe v. Wade, this GOP primary field’s votes and actions today make clear where they would stand if elected to Congress – with anti-abortion extremists across the country who are hell-bent on attacking reproductive rights and making it more difficult to for women to get access to health care,” Singer said.