In a ferocious new TV ad, Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) paints his Republican challenger, Tom Kean, Jr., as an empty suit and Donald Trump acolyte.
In “Own Words,” Malinowski uses a mailer from Kean’s GOP primary that pointedly endorsed part of Trump’s agenda and quotes Star-Ledger editorials to tie him to the former president and a national ban on abortion in his third TV ad of his 2022 re-election campaign.
Script: “Having Trump’s back? Or having a backbone? Tom Kean Jr. made his choice. Following Trump, no matter what. After all that’s happened — the violence, the lies. And all that would — more chaos, more division. A national abortion ban. Trump and the MAGA crowd know they can count on Tom Kean Jr. Because Tom Kean Jr. promised them — no matter what.”
Kean, the minority leader of the New Jersey State Senate, is mounting his second bid to unseat Malinowski, a two-term incumbent. In 2020, Malinowski won by one percentage point.
This year’s race in New Jersey’s 7th district, which was altered in redistricting to become more favorable for Republicans, is one of the most closely-watched House races in the nation.
“Tom Kean Jr. uses every chance he gets to prove his loyalty to Trump and the MAGA crowd,” said Naree Ketudat, Malinowski’s communications director “He is telling us in his own words exactly what he plans to do for this district if elected – have Donald Trump’s back no matter what. No matter the lies, the violence, and the division of the past, present or future.”
The ad was dismissed by Kean’s consultant, Harrison Neely.
“The last gasps of a spineless ethically flawed partisan, abandoned by his own party, before his impending defeat when he can finally return home to Washington, DC,” Neely said.
This story was updated at 8:58 AM with comment from Neely.