New Jersey Reform Party

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New Jersey Reform Party
Founded 1995
Dissolved 2000
Ideology Center
Website
[1]

The New Jersey Reform Party was the state party organization for New Jersey of the Reform Party of the United States of America.

History[edit]

In 1998 the party ran Frank C. Falzone, Beverly Kidder, and Richard Rivera for Congress. Kidder's campaign, dubbed "Mrs. Kidder for Congress," challenged Rush Holt and Michael Pappas in New Jersey's 12th congressional district. Kidder described why she ran saying: "I am running because there is a vacuum in the 12th District — and all vacuums are filled." [1] She received 749 votes.

The party ran Pat DiNizio for the United States Senate in 2000. His campaign tactics were unique, in that he traveled the state by trolley and often traversed the streets of New Jersey with an acoustic guitar, asking for votes through improvised songs.[2] DiNizio said he supported the Reform Party because: "I like where they are coming from, and yes, that includes Mr. Ventura." [3]

Ira Goodman, the party's Chairman, resigned in protest after Pat Buchanan's allies seized control, saying that he "had enough of this nonsense going on with Pat Buchanan."[4][5]

Goodman was, himself, a Reform Party congressional candidate. He earned 1,358 votes.[6]

Goodman had tried to petition Ross Perot to campaign a third time.[7] USA Today reported that Goodman had, initially, been supportive of Reform Party nominee Pat Buchanan, until he spoke with some of Buchanan's supporters.[8] He later said:

"Buchanan supporters are extreme social conservatives who want to push their agenda. Only Perot can help get us back on track." [9]

Following Goodman's resignation Buchanan's supporters did gain control over the party.[10] Local radio host Joe Sansone became the party's new chairman.[11] Sansone made it clear he supported Buchanan's campaign, saying: "I won't pretend to be neutral. My loyalty is to Pat Buchanan. Because his loyalty is to the United States of America." [12]

Around this time, the Reform Party of the United States sought an injunction against the New Jersey party, seeking the prevent them from using the "Reform Party" branding.

Pat Buchanan appeared at the party's 2000 convention at Raritan Valley Community College.[13][14]

The party was dissolved in the early 2000s and became inactive; many supporters joined either the extremely conservative America First Party of New Jersey or the Natural Law Party, both of which are now defunct themselves.

Interim years[edit]

In 2004, Reform Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader appeared on New Jersey's ballot as an independent. He received 18,730 votes.[15]

Ted Weill, the party's 2008 presidential candidate, did not appear on New Jersey's ballot.

Successor[edit]

In 2009, the Reform Party of New Jersey was founded as the successor to the NJ Reform Party.

Sources[edit]