State Sen. Barbara Buono’s gubernatorial campaign responded to Bishop Reginald Jackson’s endorsement of Gov. Chris Christie Monday with a statement from clergymen in her corner.
Several pastors issued a joint statement declaring the state’s “urban communities cannot afford another four years of failed leadership and broken promises.” The Democratic nominee’s campaign issued the statement moments after Jackson, a Democrat, announced his personal endorsement of the state’s Republican incumbent.
“Governor Christie has done almost nothing to revitalize our cities, leaving nearly 400,000 people looking for jobs, our schools in desperate need of repairs, and little action to reduce gun violence,” reads the statement. “Moreover, he forced many of our cities’ educators, police and firefighters into early retirement, costing them thousands in income and health care while making our cities less safe and doing nothing to improve the education gap. It seems clear that he is only now reaching out to the African-American and Hispanic communities because it is an election year. His empty rhetoric has left us disappointed.”
The statement was released by the Rev. Kenneth Saunders, senior pastor of North Shelton AME church in Piscataway, and the Rev. Ronald Owens, pastor of New Hope Baptist Church in Metuchen and a former vice chairman of the Democratic Party of Middlesex County.
The pair declared that Buono has “stood on the side of helping the people underserved by this administration” throughout her career.
“She has pushed to ensure that all children, no matter where they were born, have the same chance to receive a quality education and has fought tirelessly to stop the damaging consequences of gun violence,” they said. “We need a change in leadership in Trenton and Senator Buono is the right choice to be the next Governor of New Jersey.”