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Mendham Republicans Launch Unprecedented Attack on Voting Rights

Mendham Township Republican Losing Candidate Tom Baio
and the Morris County Republican Committee
Launch Unprecedented Attack on the Voting Rights of
Young People in Mendham Township

It is deeply disappointing that the losing Republican candidate, Tom Baio, who said he would abide by the results of a recount, is now creating divisiveness in Mendham Township and attacking the voting rights of the young people.

The voters have spoken, and they supported two new candidates, Lauren Spirig, a Democrat, and Tracy Moreen, a Republican. They supported two new voices on the Township Committee.

Unfortunately, instead of addressing the community’s challenges and moving forward, we now have to deal with an unprecedented attack on young voters launched by Tom Baio, with the full support of the Morris County Republican Committee, of which Township Committeewoman Sarah Neibart is an Officer.

In this past election, dozens of young people used Vote by Mail ballots, including many who are Republicans and Unaffiliated voters. 

We fully support their rights to vote in local elections. Whether they live fulltime in Mendham Township or elsewhere at the moment for school or other reasons, these young people are a product of their community and consider Mendham their hometown. They played in local leagues. They marched in the July 4th Parade. They are graduates of the local public or private schools. 

This Republican strategy is shameful and sends a clear message to young voters across Mendham Township that the Republican Party does not value your participation. They don’t want your input in the affairs of our Township, and want to deprive them of the most fundamental right that we have in our democratic system.

By and large the courts in our state have rejected this type of targeted challenge. It is contrary to case law and contrary to the spirit and intent of our election laws. It is clear that the Republicans prefer to launch an unprecedented assault on young people’s right to vote and are seeking to disenfranchise young voters without an adequate legal basis for doing so. 

We should be doing everything possible to engage the next generation of voters and leaders and encourage their participation in the democratic process.  

“We’ve never had a recount in a Mendham Township election, let alone this type of divisiveness. Local and County Republican operatives are trying to pit neighbor against neighbor.

“As a first-generation American, whose parents came to this country seeking political freedom, I would never try to suppress participation in elections and the democratic process. Baio owes the Township of Mendham, in particular our young people, an apology. He should immediately concede his loss to Lauren Spirig and allow the community to heal and to come together in this holiday season.”
Amalia Duarte
Morris County Democratic Committee Chair
and a Mendham Township Committeewoman

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