Rep. Rob Andrews (D-01) "may have stood on stage" with President Bush "at a signing ceremony for the Iraq War resolution," but he questions why Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D) "has a stock portfolio brimming with big oil." According to Andrews' information, Lautenberg holds stock in Copano Energy, BTA Oil, Anadarko Petroleum, Marathon Oil, and Pacific Energy. Andrews "admitted maybe it isn't a lot, but in any case he wants to know if it adds up to a significant flow of money for Lautenberg at a time" when NJans are "saddled with soaring gas prices and the country slogs through a seventh year of war in the Middle East."
Andrews: "The senator doesn't have to hide behind rhetoric...He needs to release his tax returns so the people of New Jersey can see how much income he derives (from the energy industry)." Lautenberg spokesperson Julie Roginsky "said the campaign would be releasing the senator's tax returns, and in the meantime objected to Andrews's suggestion of a conflict of interest." Roginsky: "This is a desperate ploy from a candidate who is running from his record" (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ.com, 4/30).
Andrews "has been subtly pushing Lautenberg's age as an issue, casting himself as vigorous and energetic and saying Lautenberg is the product" of "tire old status quo politics" and is "confused" about issues. In a recent Gannett NJ poll, 41 percent of the poll's respondents "said they thought Lautenberg was too old to serve." But poll director Patrick Murray "said while Lautenberg's age, as well as a hope for change, are tracking with voters, neither will do much to help Andrews win the primary."
Murray: "Democrats want new blood, but they're not seeing Rob Andrews, the 18-year House member, as new blood...So it rings a little false when he says, 'Elect me over Lautenberg.' It really isn't working. He's not the right messenger in this race" (Burton, Philadelphia Inquirer, 5/1).
The five freeholders of Hunterdon Co. "endorsed" ex-Rep. Dick Zimmer (R) in the GOP race 4/30. Zimmer: "I am honored to have the support and backing of my home county freeholders to help in my fight" (Pizarro, PolitickerNJ.com, 4/30).
This article appears in the May 1, 2008, edition of Latest Edition.