2018 - League of Humane Voters of New Jersey Endorsements

Get out and vote!

November 6, 2018 Election Day

LOHVNJ is an non-partisan organization. For endorsement purposes, our committee makes no distinction between cruelty to companion or domestic animals, and cruelty to wildlife.

In certain cases, LOHVNJ has factored in votes cast during the previous sessions or past positions held by candidates.

State and Federal Elections

In 2018, eight special elections have been called to fill 10 vacant seats in the New Jersey State Legislature. State and Congressional races feature exceptional animal protection candidates.

Endorsements - New Jersey Legislature

Nearly one year into New Jersey's legislative session, many important animal bills have yet to be posted for a committee or floor vote in the Senate or Assembly. The LOHVNJ scorecard features existing, and limited, voting records. We endorse the below candidates because of their strong support for animal protective legislation. 

Cited bills:

  1. Leghold Law (S179/A3110). Prohibits cruel body-gripping traps and snares, including the so-called "enclosed" leghold trap allowed by the Fish and Game Council in contravention of New Jersey's existing 1984 law that banned all types of leghold traps.

  2. Pedals' Law  (S2769/A2455). Establishes a 5-year moratorium on the black bear hunt, restricts baiting in bear country, and implements programs to restrict human-derived foods and trash.

  3. Nosey's Law (S1093/A1923). Prohibits the use of elephants and other exotic animals in traveling circuses. The bill was drafted in honor of Nosey, an African elephant, now rescued, who, like so many animals used for human entertainment, suffered decades of abuse in a traveling circus.

  4. The Shelter Law (S2940/A4451). Notably, this bill expands the time during which a homeless or abandoned animal must be held by a shelter from the grossly inadequate 7 to 30 days. Our objective is that all New Jersey shelters be no kill, and operate not for the convenience of those who run them, but for the animals whose lives depend on adoption. The Shelter Law is a big step in the right direction.

  5. Hot Car Law (S1860/A2318). Expands conditions under which animals left in motor vehicles may be rescued.

  6. Bijou's Law (S2514/A3044). Establishes license requirements for pet groomers. Bijou, a 6-year-old Shih-Tzu, was tragically killed during a routine trip to the groomer at a well-known pet store chain.

2018 LOHV-NJ Legislative Scorecard (acrobat PDF)

LOHVNJ-Endorsed Candidates by Legislative District:

To find your legislative district, please click here.

  • District 5. Assemblyman William Spearman (D), an appointee who replaced Assemblyman Arthur Barclay, voted favorably for Nosey's Law and Bijou's Law.

  • District 15. Assemblywoman Verlina Reynolds-Jackson (D), replaced Elizabeth Muoio, currently Secretary of the Treasury. Assemblywoman Reynolds-Jackson co-sponsored and voted favorably for Nosey's and Bijou's Laws.

  • District 32. Assemblyman Pedro Mejia (D) filled the seat vacated by former Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto. Assemblyman Mejia voted favorably for Nosey's Law and co-sponsored and voted for Bijou's Law.

  • District 34. Assemblywoman Britnee Timberlake (D) replaced Sheila Oliver, New Jersey's Lieutenant Governor. Assemblywoman Timberlake voted favorably for both Nosey's and Bijou's Laws.

  • District 36. During his brief tenure, Assemblyman Clinton Calabrese (D), appointed to replace Assemblywoman Marlene Caride in District 36, has been an exceptional animal advocate. Assemblyman Calabrese co-sponsored the Leghold Law, co-sponsored Pedal's Law, voted favorably for Nosey's and Bijou's Laws, and voted to release the Hot Car legislation from committee.

  • District 38. When in the Assembly during the 2016-2017 session, Joseph Lagana (D), who in January 2018 replaced Senator Robert Gordon, earned a 100 percent animal protection voting record. In the current session, Senator Lagana voted favorably for Nosey's Law, is a prime sponsor of the Shelter Law, and voted for the Hot Car Law.

  • District 38. Assemblyman Christopher Tully replaced Tim Eustace, who sponsored the Assembly legislation to protect New Jersey's leghold trap law from the Fish and Game "regulation." Assemblyman Tully voted favorably for Nosey's and Bijou's Laws, and is a prime sponsor of the Shelter Law.

  • District 38. An Assemblywoman since May, Lisa Swain (D) replaced Joseph Langana, who moved to the Senate. Assemblywoman Swain voted favorably for Nosey's and Bijou's Laws, is a prime sponsor of the Shelter Law, and voted for the Hot Car Law.

United States Congress  

State legislative and federal congressional voting districts are not the same. House representatives represent districts; U.S. senators represent the entire state. For your Congressional district, please click here.

Federal voting records of incumbents can be found here. (Courtesy of the Humane Society Legislative Fund)

LOHVNJ-Endorsed Candidates by District  

  • District 4. Congressman Chris Smith (R). Animal Protection Scorecard: 100%.

  • District 5. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (D). Animal Protection Scorecard: 100%.

  • District 8. Congressman Albio Sires (D). Animal Protection Scorecard: 100%.

  • District 9. Congressman Bill Pascrell (D). Animal Protection Scorecard: 100%.

  • District 11. Candidate Bill Webber (R), who had abysmal record for animal protection in the New Jersey Assembly, is running for the 11th District Congressional seat. Challenger Mikie Sherrill (D) is a better choice.

  • District 12: Challenger Daryl Kipnis (R), well known to LOHVNJ, is a strong supporter of animal protection issues and a much better choice than incumbent Bonnie Watson Coleman (D).

  • NOTE State Senator Jeff Van Drew is running for a seat in Congressional District 2. Senator Van Drew sponsored and/or voted for many anti-wildlife bills involving hunting and trapping.

LOHVNJ-Endorsed U.S. Senate:

  • Robert Menendez (D)​, Animal Protection Scorecard: 100%.

LOHVNJ-Recommended Local Candidates


  • West Milford Township Council: Kristin Reeves (D). The others running are pro-bear hunt.

    Mayoral Race: Chris Garcia (D)