Is It Too Soon For Political Fighting? Not in NJ’s 3rd Congressional District It Isn’t


TOMS RIVER-In one of the country’s most heated congressional battles of the 2020 election, New Jersey’s 3rd Congressional District, Congressman Andy Kim and Democrats are exchanging political barbs with one of his opponents, David Richter.

Here’s what we know so far…

  • David Richter filed legal complaint to invalidate Novak’s candidacy.
  • Novak forced to suspend his campaign due to that filing.
  • Novak endorsed Richter after being defeated by Richter in court.
  • Andy Kim and the DCCC attacked Richter for accepting Novak endorsement.

This week, Ocean County resident John Novak, the only person running for office who actually lives in Ocean County announced he is dropping out the race and supporting his former opponent, David Richter.   Novak is a hardline conservative Republican with a brazen attitude and Democrats who are not, saw an opportunity.

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Kim and the Democrats didn’t wait to use that endorsement to attack Richter.

“In accepting and embracing John Novak, David Richter has made clear that he embraces his most extreme policies, including gutting protections for New Jerseyans with preexisting conditions and raising the costs of health care,” said Christine Bennett, DCCC Spokesperson. “Voters in New Jersey’s 3rd district want steady, sound leadership, not recklessness, and that’s why they will reelect Andy Kim come November.”

Novak said he withdrew his candidacy after Richter filed a legal challenge to knock him off the ballot and it worked.   Many who signed Richter’s petition also signed Novak.

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“After careful review, line by line and signature by signature, it was to be that many who signed my petitions also signed David’s or another candidate’s petitions,” Novak said. “Several others were invalid for various reasons; the facts are what the facts are and the law is the law.  The proper thing to do under these circumstances is to withdraw.”

It’s the end of a dream for Novak, but he’s ready to continue fighting to remove Andy Kim from office.

“Last summer I was inspired to consider running for Congress and was led to enter the race; I did so with a passion for this country, its freedoms and its foundational beginnings,” Novak said. “As a conservative Republican I sought to protect our Bill of Rights, especially the First Amendment and Second Amendment, as well as free-market capitalism, individual liberties and the sanctity of life.  I want America First.  Unseating Andy Kim and restoring the House of Representatives to the Republicans is imperative for this agenda.”

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Now, as COVID-19 continues, we can expect a heated three-way scene to unfold between Kim, Richter and Kate Gibbs, who’s been relatively quiet since the pandemic began.  The Richter campaign dealt a blow to Gibbs after providing the Asbury Park Press with her prior arrest record and other unsavory bits of information to narrowly seal his endorsement by the Ocean County GOP.