Cool article from New Jersey on the candidates participating in this year's three-district Clean Elections pilot program, who are learning the ins and outs of running the Clean Elections way. Though the article quips they're "being forced to run real door-to-door, grass-roots campaigns" it sounds like most are enjoying the challenge.
Candidate -- and pilot project co-sponsor in the Assembly -- Bill Baroni (D-Hamilton) is particularly excited: " "People around the state are looking at the 14th District as the experiment. This forces us to engage people at the grass-roots level, the way politics used to be." In fact, the candidates currently working to collect qualifying contributions to participate in the program are also serving to educate the public about what Clean Elections is and how it can benefit voters. One Republican candidate sums this up nicely:
Republican Adam Bushman, a former Jamesburg councilman running for the Assembly along with Hamilton Councilman Tom Goodwin, said he has collected about 220 or 230 donations, mostly by meeting with small groups in his friends' homes.
"It's kind of cool, because I tell them that I could actually go to Trenton with a clean conscience" because he will not have to take special interest money, he said.