SOMADEMS Host Democratic NJ Gubernatorial Candidates Johnson & Wisniewski

On Thursday night, March 2, SOMADEMS hosted Democratic gubernatorial candidates Jim Johnson, former U.S. Under Secretary of the Treasury for Enforcement, and New Jersey State Assemblyman John Wisniewski at the group’s first Meet the Governor Candidates Forum at the South Orange Performing Arts Center.

Ritu Pancholy, a South Orange resident and co-founder of SOMADEMS, said that the group was hosting the forums because, “Now, more than ever, voters have to meet the candidates who are running for office and make their own determination as to who is the best person to lead New Jersey in the future.”

The forum was moderated by Antony Bugg-Levine, a South Orange resident.

Johnson, of Montclair, is a lawyer who has spent the last two years bringing together members of the civil rights and law enforcement communities in a collaboration known as New Jersey Communities Forward – a project within the NJ Institute for Social Justice. He formerly served as a U.S. Department of Treasury official under then-President Bill Clinton and a federal prosecutor. Johnson also served as co-counsel and chairman of the Brennan Center for Justice.

Wisniewski, of Sayreville, has served in the New Jersey General Assembly since 1995 where he has worked to improve roads and bridges as chairman of the transportation committee. Also as chairman, he led an investigation into the Gov. Chris Christie Bridgegate scandal. Wisniewski has sponsored legislation to increase the minimum wage, led efforts to expand voting rights, and was an early sponsor of legislation to provide marriage equality for the LGBT community.

The primary election in on June 6.

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Photos are by Matt Peyton. Click to enlarge:

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