Press Releases

BIG: Three NJ-Sen Candidates Call for Fair Ballot Design

Feb 08, 2024

In the face of backroom machine politics that is attempting to rig the primary election, three New Jersey Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate—Congressman Andy Kim, Patricia Campos-Medina, and Lawrence Hamm—joined forces today to call for a fair ballot design across New Jersey.

“Our elections are under attack by Donald Trump and MAGA extremists, which is why it’s critical for Democrats to be united in standing up for democratic principles and fair elections,” said End Citizens United // Let America Vote Communications Director Jonas Edwards-Jenks. “New Jersey’s corrupt, machine-style ballot line design is an undemocratic practice that only serves to benefit the well-connected insiders instead of the voters. It’s past time for New Jersey to abandon this bygone relic of the past and join every other state in instituting fair ballots.”

New Jersey Globe: Three Democratic U.S. Senate candidates pitch for office block ballot design

David Wildstein

Key sections: 

  • Saying there is a “crisis of credibility” in the Democratic U.S. Senate primary, candidates Andy Kim, Patricia Campos-Medina, and Lawrence Hamm today sent a letter to the state’s county clerks in New Jersey asking them to eliminate the advantages of organization lines in key elections and instead use an office block ballot design in the June 4 primary election.

  • The three Senate candidates allege that there are the system needs to be changed because “improper and unfair practices will continue to be taken within our party.”

  • “Public news stories have detailed coordination between First Lady Tammy Murphy’s campaign and the state Democratic Party, potential conflicts of interest, intimidation tactics, threats, public attacks, and questions about the use of state party resources,” Kim, Camos-Medina, and Hamm said.  “Calls for an investigation have gone unanswered, even against the backdrop of serious concerns over broader conflicts of interest given the dynamics of this particular cycle and the role of the Governor’s Office.

  • “As Democrats, we cannot accept a ballot system that is inconsistent with our values and directly contradicts our fight to protect and promote democracy and voting rights,” Kim said. “It does not have to be this way. Our County Clerks and our County Democratic Party Chairs have it in their power to call for and provide an office block ballot for the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate.  We have a chance to show the people of New Jersey and the country that we’re better than the corruption we’ve seen from Senator Menendez; rejecting this ballot system would be an important step.”

  • “At a time when President Biden is running on a platform to protect our democracy, we cannot be seen as taking steps here in New Jersey that are viewed as undemocratic, or worse still, pressure the President to do so,” the three candidates said.  “Otherwise we will severely damage our ability to attract voters, especially unaffiliated and young voters who are weary after the Senator’s indictment.”