Home>Feature>Trump endorsement of Singh is fake, ex-President’s spokesman says

President Donald Trump speaks at a rally in Wildwood, New Jersey on January 28, 2020. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe)

Trump endorsement of Singh is fake, ex-President’s spokesman says

Singh supporters circulating fabricated Trump endorsement letter

By David Wildstein, June 07 2021 11:52 am

Former President Donald Trump has not taken sides in the Republican primary for governor of New Jersey, but one campaign appears to have mocked up a fake endorsement of Hirsh Singh in Tuesday’s primary election.

“This posting is FAKE,” said Jason Miller, a spokesman for Trump. “President Trump has NOT endorsed in the race for Governor in New Jersey.”

With less than 24 hours remaining before the in-person polls open, a sudden outbreak of fake endorsements has emerged, with Newark Mayor Ras Baraka denying that he has endorsed a candidate for Essex County Sheriff who is challenging longtime incumbent Armando Fontoura. Potentially hurt the most by the false Trump endorsement is Phil Rizzo, the Hudson pastor-turned-gubernatorial candidate who is competing with Singh for pro-Trump Republican primary votes.

Trump’s “Save America” logo that he uses on other email statements appears on the bogus endorsement.

Also included is a tag line at the bottom of the purported statement: “Like and share if you think Donald Trump should endorse Hirsh Singh for Governor in New Jersey” – an odd statement if the ex-President had already endorsed him.

“Deliberately attempting to mislead voters by fabricating a fake endorsement from President Trump is a new low, and the parties responsible should retract and denounce this deceitful tactic immediately. Neither a candidate nor their supporters should be pushing a fake endorsement from President Trump,” said GOP State Chairman Michael Lavery. “Part of the New Jersey Republican brand is honesty, and what differentiates us from politicians like Phil Murphy is the respect we have for voters. We must all remember and embody that.”

Former Nutley Commissioner Steve Rogers, a Trump campaign advisor and 2017 gubernatorial candidate, said that it was time for New Jersey Republicans to “step up and remove Hirsh Singh from our party.”

“In my view his supporters and campaign misrepresented (President) Trump and damaged our MAGA agenda,” Rogers said. “To distribute a fraudulent endorsement from a POTUS (Trump) is very sad.”

The counterfeit endorsement comes as Singh seeks to wrap himself in Trump in a last-ditch bid to score an upset in tomorrow’s election, where Republicans are picking an opponent to take on Gov. Phil Murphy.  The letter has been shared extensively on Facebook but does not appear on Singh’s campaign Facebook page or on one run by his campaign manager, King Penna.

“This looks like a King Penna special, unless Hirsh has hired James Devine,” said one Republican insider, linking the Singh operative to the man behind some of the weirder political hijinks of late.

This story was  updated at 12:43 PM with comment from Lavery and Rogers.

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