LUPE PAC strongly believes that New Jersey should have at least one woman representing every legislative district in the state. In LD18, now that Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin has been elected to serve as Middlesex County clerk, the remainder of her unfinished term should go to a woman. We must avoid taking steps back as the state just recently reached a record-breaking number of women elected to office, but with only 30% of legislative seats held by women. The demographics of the 18th Legislative District don’t deem representation by solely men. We must make a conscious effort to move electoral representation forward, not backward.
We applaud LD 18’s Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin for throwing her hat into the ring for the Middlesex County Clerk’s race to replace the retiring Elaine Flynn, and congratulate her on her victory. We are thrilled to see a woman remain in that position. It is clear, however, that now someone will need to be chosen in January 2021 to fill the remaining 54 weeks of her Assembly term. We strongly urge the Democratic Middlesex County committee members of LD18 to choose from the pool of ready and qualified women in the district.
With 10 State Senators and 27 Assemblywomen, the New Jersey Legislature currently has a record-breaking number of female legislators. But with women only holding 30% of the seats in both houses, it is imperative that we avoid any steps back. According to the Center for American Women and Politics, New Jersey has been slipping in the rankings for women’s representation in the State Legislature, dropping from 9th to 21st nationally in just the last six years. The Democratic County committee members tasked with filling this position should consider this fact and ensure the individual they choose to fill the remainder of the term is a woman.
Assemblywoman Pinkin has been a valuable advocate for women’s issues. She recently participated in a summit to boost firms owned by women and minorities in New Jersey. She was a prime sponsor of legislation establishing the “My Life, My Plan” program to support women of childbearing age in developing a reproductive life plan. Currently, she is the prime sponsor of legislation that would require publicly held domestic and foreign corporations based in New Jersey to appoint women to their boards of directors. Another woman who is able to intimately understand the importance of these issues they and other women face will be able to promote and effectuate policy that continues to address these critical issues.
The New Jersey legislature needs as many advocates for women as it can get, especially with the current climate surrounding the experience of women in New Jersey politics. Putting more women in positions of power promotes gender equity, and women themselves are uniquely capable of understanding women’s issues. It is critical that a position opened by the departure of Pinkin be filled by a woman who can continue to foster the efforts that benefit the women throughout our state as well as serve as desperately needed representation in not only Assembly committees, voting sessions and public events, but caucus rooms, policy discussions, and closed-door meetings as well.