By Art Gallagher
Stephanie Schmid, the presumptive Democrat nominee in NJ-4, committed an extreme unforced error in her reaction to the news that Congressman Chris Smith’s amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 was unanimously passed by the House of Representatives.
The amendment requires a GAO investigation into the possibility that Defense Department experiments in the 1950’s resulted in bio-weaponized Lyme disease.
Schmid responded to NewJerseyGlobe’s report of the Amendment’s passage on twitter by accusing Smith of wasting the taxpayers’ money promoting a debunked conspiracy theory rather than focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic crisis.
Schmid’s tweet prompted high level criticism from within the Democrat Party and academia.
“Facts matter,” Michael Soliman said to NewJerseyGlobe. “Candidates need to know what they’re talking about before shooting from the hip if they want to be taken seriously.”
Soliman ran Senator Bob Menendez’s reelection campaigns in 2012 and 2018. In his 2018 victory speech, Senator Menendez called Soliman “the greatest strategist in the state of New Jersey.” He’s not a guy you want criticizing your credibility if your a Democrat running for Congress.
Micah Rasmussen, the director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University was perhaps more damaging in his comment to NJGlobe about Schmid’s tweet.
“Schmid has called attention to Smith’s effectiveness in convincing both House caucuses to unanimously support his bill, which is an accomplishment for any legislator who is in the minority,” said Micah Rasmussen, the director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University. “While Smith’s assertions may sound wild to Schmid, her opinion is not shared by either the Democratic leadership of the House, which posted the bill for a vote, or every other members of the House, who voted for it.”
Rasmussen said that this year, the House has only taken 152 roll call votes and maybe a few hundred voice votes, something he says “gives some idea that it’s a big deal for any member to get a bill passed.”
“The point is, this is not something that happens every day for a Republican in a Democratic-led House,” Rasmussen explained.
Schmid is off to a very rocky start to her general election campaign. She’s been caught lying about her funding raising results. She’s been caught lying about her work experience. She’s been caught lying about her internship in Smith’s office while she was in high school. With this latest unforced error, she’s likely to have a very hard time raising enough money to compete after Labor Day.
I hope she recovers because I have a lot more Schmidy jokes. Her name will be Schmid all over NJ-4 by November.
P.S. Stepping in Schmid is only good luck if you step in it with your left foot. This was definitely a right footed step in it.