Republican State Chairman Tom Wilson faxed an angry letter to Democratic U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg this morning, accusing his reelection campaign of being the source of today’s Star-Ledger story that quoted a lawsuit related to an intra-family business spat that led to Senate candidate Andy Unanue’s ouster as Chief Operating Officer of Goya Foods.
“It is telling that after nearly 25 years in office, the best you have to offer the people of New Jersey is a tired, old gutter campaign replete with sleazy personal attacks,” said Wilson. “Frankly, the legal proceedings from Andy's family business dispute are no more relevant or appropriate campaign fodder than your divorce proceedings.”
The four year old testimony quoted in the article alleged that Unanue showed up to work drunk. In his own testimony, Unanue disputed that, but admitted that he had come to work hung over.
Wilson went on to outline past Lautenberg campaigns where he said he smeared his opponents, like the campaign against Republican Millicent Fenwick that launched his Senate career.
“From your 1982 campaign that suggested that Millicent Fenwick, at 72 (12 years your younger), was too old to serve to your 1998 name calling
campaign against Pete Dawkins to your use of cropped photos and baseless personal attacks against Chuck Haytaian's family in 1994 to your participation in the 2002 switcharoo, your campaigns have always been notable for their negativity and sleazy tactics,” he said.
Wilson ended the letter by asking Lautenberg to “pledge that you will end your 2008 campaign of sleaze at once and for once in your long career commit to a race that focuses on the problems our families face and the solutions that best address those challenges.”
Democratic Senatorial Camaign Committee Matt Miller responded that it's not his fault the Republican Party originally missed the information.
“Tom Wilson should spend less time writing these silly attack letters and more time vetting his unqualified candidates," he said.
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