Paul Backs Steve Lonegan for NJ Senator

Paul Backs Steve Lonegan for NJ Senator

He opposes an attack on Syria. He thinks his home state of New Jersey got too much federal money for Hurricane Sandy relief. He thinks the NSA has overstepped its boundaries with its nationwide (and worldwide) spying program. He thinks the current GOP leadership is playing too much footsy with the Obama administration.

It’s no wonder Sen. Rand Paul wants to support this guy.

That would be Steve Lonegan, a conservative activist as described by the Washington Post’s Sean Sullivan. Lonegan is running against Newark Mayor Corey Booker (the likely favorite) in this fall’s special election. The senate seat is open after the death of longtime democratic Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who passed away on June 3, 2013.

Writes Sullivan:

“Lonegan recently said he is ‘more on the side’ of Paul in his spat with Christie over national security. And like Paul, Lonegan opposes U.S. military action in Syria.

Christie endorsed Lonegan last month, though the two are far from close allies. Lonegan, the former Bogota mayor, lost to Christie in the 2009 governor’s race.”

Lonegan won the Republican primary last month by getting 80 percent of he vote. He served as New Jersey director of the conservative group Americans for Prosperity – a group that looks to cut taxes and government spending “in order to halt the encroachment of government in the economic lives of citizens,” according to its website.

In an interview with MSNBC, Lonegan called the federal funding for Hurricane Sandy relief “over the top,” and thought it was “too much money.”

Later in the interview, he chastised the NSA for its spying program.

“I am deeply concerned about a government that really should be protecting us from our enemies rather than spying on our friends and our neighbors and our families,” he said. “The NSA has overreached its powers.”

It sounds pretty similar to someone we know well. Someone who was elected in 2010 and has since ridden a wave of grassroots, Tea Party momentum to immense popularity. Is it a sign that the message from elected officials like Paul is resonating? If people are getting nominated and elected, it’s hard to argue otherwise.

So with all that in mind, is it any surprise Paul is openly campaigning for this candidate on Sept. 13?



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