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New Jersey Economic Development Authority Alternate Member John Lutz

EDA board member to help GOP Assembly candidates

Independent expenditure group has strong ties to Chris Christie

By David Wildstein, July 02 2019 8:16 pm

A New Jersey Economic Development Authority alternate member appointed by Gov. Chris Christie has formed an independent expenditure committee to elect Republicans to the State Assembly in the 2019 mid-term elections.

John Lutz, a high school classmate of former U.S. Senator Jeff Chiesa, will serve as chairman of Just The Facts New Jersey.  Peter Sheridan a longtime aide to Christie, will serve as executive director, and Republican fundraiser Brittany Brinkman was announced as treasurer.

“For too long liberal special interests have poured millions into legislative elections unchecked and unmatched,” Sheridan said in a statement announcing the creation of the group.  “No more.  JTFNJ will engage to defend and increase the Republican caucus in Trenton and to expose the extreme policies of Trenton Democrats during the Murphy midterms.”

A tax attorney and partner at McDermott, Will & Emery, Lutz served as chief counsel to Chiesa during his brief tenure in the United States Senate six years ago.  In 2015, he co-hosted a breakfast for bundlers raising money for Leadership Matters for America, a political action committee that supported Christie’s campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

Lutz was among a group of four Republican Christie appointees to the EDA that Gov. Phil Murphy sought to oust in April amidst controversies involving more than $11 billion in tax credits awarded by the embattled agency.  He refused to resign.

Just The Facts is pledging to “fight back against entrenched special interest money that has been flowing in on behalf of Democrat legislative candidates over the last decade,” according to their press release.  “Republican leaders have been fighting for taxpayers as Governor Phil Murphy and Trenton Democrats continue to raise taxes and increase spending — driving New Jerseyans from their home and our state.  It’s time to fight back.”

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