The New Jersey Tenants Organization endorsed Assemblywoman Valeri Vainieri Huttle’s (D-Englewood) bid for State Senate Thursday.
“Valerie Vainieri Huttle has been on the side of protecting and advancing the civil rights of tenants whenever we have needed her help,” organization president Matt Shapiro said. “We recognize that we are not unique, Vainieri Huttle has fought for the rights of every group that has suffered from discrimination and oppression – tenants, women, people of color, victims of domestic violence and more.”
Huttle and her longtime running mate, Assemblyman Gordon Johnson (D-Englewood), are both running to fill Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg’s (D-Teaneck) seat in the upper chamber. Weinberg is not seeking re-election and has endorsed Johnson for her seat.
Johnson has the support of the Bergen County Democratic Committee, while Vainieri Huttle is making her bid off-the-line. They’re each running their own slate of Assembly candidates.
The contest has become an increasingly acrid one over recent weeks. Vainieri Huttle has launched repeated attacks at Johnson over a years-old accusation that he made inappropriate comments to a politically active Englewood woman.
Most recently, she attacked Johnson over stalled movement on the Reproductive Freedom Act, a bill that would, among other things, codify New Jersey’s abortion protections in state law. Both lawmakers are sponsoring the bill, whose movement has frozen as some Democratic legislators question whether immediate action is needed.
The bill is expected to see a vote during this year’s lame duck session.