The Republican nominee to oppose Cory Booker for Frank Lautenberg's seat is a prototypical Koch acolyte, right down to his leadership of the state chapter of Americans for Prosperity.
August 14, 2013

Meet Steve Lonegan, water carrier for Americans for Prosperity. Having hitched his wagon to the Kochs, Lonegan is looking to hate his way into the United States Senate this fall as he takes on Cory Booker. Calling him colorful would be an understatement.

American Bridge dug up a collection of some of Lonegan's greatest hits, and those are likely to be just the beginning. Here are a few of the more interesting ones:

Race Cards

“I have a handicap, you know,” he said. “I am a white guy running in the state of New Jersey. That is my handicap.”


During a debate on the Affordable Care Act, Lonegan said: “Well, I’ll go one step further. I’ll be as callous and uncaring as you can imagine. I have no interest in paying for your health care. I’d hate to see you get cancer, but that’s your problem not mine. I’m going to pay for my health care, I’m going to take care of my children’s health care and tend to my wife. And when I stand for charity care (inaudible), you no one else has the authority to infringe on my right (inaudible) dig into my pocket and my ability to pay to pay for your health care or anybody else’s.”

Hurricane Sandy Relief:

During an interview with New Jersey Today, Lonegan said: “If we are going to look at someone’s home being destroyed in a hurricane, and that is tragic for them to see their home being destroyed, but remember that every day around this country, somewhere, somebody is suffering a tragedy of equal or worse impact and we don’t run and hand them a check.”

Medicare and Medicaid:

During a tea party meeting, Lonegan said, “I didn’t hear Mark Levin’s ideas about Medicare and Medicaid but I think they are destined for destruction for the next generation. I think they should be redone away with and privatized. That’s what I think.”

There are many more, but assume that when Lonegan opens his mouth, he's speaking Koch-ish. He is the full embodiment of their libertarian dreams. Not only that, but he's not afraid to lie when he needs money:

In 2009 Lonegan sought public financing under the state’s clean elections law, and swore under oath to the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) that he had not participated in any type of advocacy organization for four years prior to becoming a candidate. According to campaign finance data and public tax disclosures, Lonegan had participated in several advocacy organizations, despite his statements to New Jersey officials—including $132,500 from Americans for Prosperity, the group financed by billionaires David and Charles Koch.

As a result, he took $2.7 million in taxpayer funds.

Barring any unforeseen scandal or circumstances, Cory Booker is likely to be the one chosen to fill Frank Lautenberg's seat. While Booker is certainly better than Lonegan could ever hope to be, he isn't progressive and he is firmly entrenched with Wall Street big money interests. He is one of the "No Labels" school reformer types, and he has some really dicey church ties, too.

Still, New Jersey voters would do well to accept Booker over the alternative.

*UPDATE: Post corrected. Lonegan's first name is Steve, not Frank.

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