One thousand Montclair locals lined up outside Watchung Booksellers to receive an autograph from Hillary Clinton, while others waited outside just to catch a glimpse of her on Tuesday night.
Along the lines, NJ 11th For Change volunteers were hard at work, advocating for voter registration and providing information on Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen’s voting record and about the other candidates running against him in the next election.
“(NJ 11th for Change) is a group of constituents of Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen of the 11th district, who are committed to helping him move on to the next phase of his life, which may be retirement,” said Lori Heninger of the NJ 11th for Change steering committee. “We want to help him move on because he does not represent the constituents of the 11th district. It’s very clear, we’ve done polling and because he’s the head of the appropriations committee, votes a very straight republican line which really reflects the Trump positions.”
The organization is a grassroots coalition that promotes political transparency and that has received local attention for their efforts in working to have Frelinghuysen hold a town hall meeting.
The NJ 11th for Change volunteers could be easily spotted by their signature purple gear, handing out informative brochures, stickers and even pocket copies of the Constitution, which turned out to be a hit among the younger demographic at the event.
Heninger couldn’t contain her happiness for the amount of children that asked her for a copy of the Constitution.
“We handed a whole bunch out to kids, kids were really interested and it was wonderful,” Heninger said. “Civics is not taught anymore, it’s Social Studies now, so there’s not the same immersion in U.S. government and the Constitution… the Constitution is the backbone of the United States… and I think that giving out the Constitution to people is a way to reinforce what the United States is about.”
While several Clinton supporters left the meet and greet moved to tears, Heninger was undoubtedly overjoyed at the participation of younger generations at the event.
“People are activated and they want their kids to be activated,” Heninger said. “We’re really happy to be here and with Hillary doing the book signing across the street, we’ve gotten incredible, positive feedback, lots of excitement, people are motivated for us at NJ 11.”
Coincidentally, the event coincided with National Voter Registration Day and if there was any message Heninger and NJ 11th for Change wanted to get across, it was that people need to vote.
“If you’re not registered to vote, register,” Heninger said. “If you are registered to vote, this election coming up in New Jersey, we’re voting for Governor and governors in the United States can get together and they have a lot of power and so we need to make sure that people are mobilized to get out and vote.
“We want people to vote and our feeling is that if we provide the information about the Congressman’s record, it will motivate people. I also think that people seeing other people volunteering, activates them and motivates them so it’s a real win-win situation,” she added.
All those interested in getting involved with NJ 11th for Change can visit their website www.nj11.org or attend their weekly visits to the Congressman’s District offices on Fridays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 30 Schuyler Place in Morristown and on Wednesdays at the Wayne Municipal Building at 10:45 a.m.
— watchungbooksellers (@watchungbooks) September 27, 2017