Holt interested in U.S. Senate seat
By Max Pizarro | February 14th, 2013 - 7:49pm
| More

U.S. Rep. Rush Holt (D-12) wants to be a U.S. Senator.

The news today of U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg’s (D-N.J.) decision not to seek re-election reconfirmed that, although Holt was not ready tonight to say he is definitely running.

"There's no point in being coy," Holt said. "I've made no secret in previous years that I would consider the Senate at the right time. But an expression of interest should not be taken as a campaign announcement."

Holt has long nursed aspirations to go to the upper chamber. His father, Rush Holt, Sr., served as a U.S. Senator from West Virginia.

First elected to the Congress in 1999, Holt blasted his way into a Republican district, working it into a Democratic Party stronghold in the years since. He has a reputation for running strong, organized campaigns.

His professorial Princeton University demeanor belies a zest for politics and competitive, sharp-elbowed skills, on display during his 2010 staredown of venture capitalist Scott Sipprelle at the height of Tea Party backlash.

"Rush would be the candidate who could best make the case that he's run and won against Republicans," said a Democratic Party source. 

The veteran congressman's competitors for the seat are likely to include Newark Mayor Cory Booker – who is running - and Holt’s fellow congressman, U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone (D-6).

Senate President Steve Sweeney (D-3) hasn’t ruled out a 2014 run. Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver (D-34) has likewise toyed with the idea of running but her benefactor, powerful Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo, is already on record in support of Booker for U.S. Senate.

On the heels of Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s announcement that he intends to explore a 2014 U.S. Senate bid, Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo said Booker could count on his support if he chooses to run.

“Frank Lautenberg is a great senator,” DiVincenzo said of Lautenberg (D-NJ) last year. “But if Cory makes that decision, there is no question I would support Cory Booker. He would do an outstanding job representing New Jersey. He would be at the top of the top 100 because as a national star he would move up very quickly. We would have Cory Booker and Bob Menendez. How can you do better than that?”

Today, Holt paid tribute to Lautenberg in a statement, emphasizing the particular gratitude he feels for the retiring senator’s work on gun violence.

“There is no one in New Jersey history quite like Frank R. Lautenberg,” the congressman said. “He is a true champion for New Jersey, an effective advocate and skillful politician, and someone who has never forgotten his roots or the valuable role that government can play in helping people. It is a privilege to continue working with Frank on so many issues, from preventing harassment in schools to promoting research and development to keeping our trains and buses safe. As Frank has said himself, much work remains to be done over the next two years.  In particular, America will be a safer and better place when more in Congress listen to Frank’s longstanding, relentless, and passionate pleas to stop gun violence.

"Frank remains a terrific friend to New Jerseyans and to me," the congressman added.

If Holt were to get in the contest to succeed Lautenberg, he would conceivably face a rival advised by one of Holt's former inner circle consigliere's: Mark Matzen, now a member of the Booker Team.

Tags:

Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: September 2nd

Campaign season now under way in Bergen County Politics is practiced year-round in Bergen County, and street-level campaigning has been going on quietly all summer. But both Republicans and Democrats say the Rutherford Street Fair on Labor Day signals a more intense phase of electioneering. (Ensslin/The Bergen Record) http://www.northjersey.com/news/campaign-season-now-under-way-in-bergen-county-1.1079080  ...

Op-Ed

White House’s Tuition Challenge Being Met in NJ

By MICHAEL W. KLEIN In his weekly radio address on August 16, President Obama challenged colleges “to do their part to bring down costs” and lighten the tuition burden on students.  The state colleges and universities in New Jersey have... Read More >

Contributors

My Republican Hillary Clinton Experience    There is a veritable plethora of reportage in print, internet, television and radio media speculating as to whether Hillary Clinton will seek the Democratic... more »
(8-27-14) All Americans Should Support Gov. Perry - Political prosecutions have no place in American life. Those who use the justice system as they are using it in Texas... more »
(Asbury Park, NJ) -- There's a word for someone who says one thing and does another: hypocrite.  There's no shortage of 'em in Trenton -- from ... more »
 The following letter was sent today to Republican state legislators, county chairs, state committee members, and New Hampshire... more »

Quote of the Day

quote of the day

"Governor Christie ripped President Obama this summer for failing to carve out some time during a Texas fundraising swing to visit the Mexican border, where the unprecedented flood of immigrant children from Central America had reached a crisis point. ...Yet Christie is not squeezing in a tour of the troubled border during his own three-day trade and diplomatic mission to Mexico, which is set to begin on Wednesday. The governor is planning a series of meetings with Mexican officials, including President Enrique Peña Nieto and the finance and energy ministers." - columnist Charles Stile

- The Bergen Record

Poll

Who is a better field general for his party as both try to win governor's races around the country?:

Blogroll

Visit the PolitickerNJ.com/resources page for links to the best collection of information on New Jersey state government.

 

  • Polls
  • The best blogs
  • Columnists
  • State election results
  • Assembly election results
  • Local party websites
  • And more.

PolitickerNJ.com/resources