Lonegan jumps ahead of primary, attacks Booker in radio ad

U.S. Senate candidate Steve Lonegan has skipped right over the August primary election and moved into his general campaign.

Lonegan, the former mayor of Bogota, launched a radio ad this week entitled “Two mayors” attacking Newark Mayor Cory Booker on his record in the state’s largest city.

Booker holds a sizeable lead in the polls over three Democratic challengers.

“Steve Lonegan cut spending, froze debt, kept taxes far below inflation,” the ad intones. “Cory Booker’s Newark record? Debt up 57 percent, taxes up three times the cost of living. And the nation’s most expensive school failing and funded by suburban taxpayers.”

The ad goes on to call Booker an “Obama liberal” and a “liberal through and through” and attacks Booker on progressive stances on abortion and green energy.

The ad will run in the New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia media markets.

Lonegan is challenged in the Aug. 13 primary by Alieta Eck, but like Booker, is up by a wide margin in the polls.

Lonegan has said he would rather face Booker than U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, who is also in the Democratic mix, because he believes Booker’s record will be easier to attack.

Lonegan jumps ahead of primary, attacks Booker in radio ad