Jack Ciattarelli

Key Facts

Party Republican
Status Challenger

Background

Jack Ciattarelli graduated from Seton Hall University with a Bachelor of Science in accounting and an M.B.A in finance.

Key Issues

Economy/Jobs

Governor Murphy supports a $15 minimum wage by 2024, higher taxes on millionaires, government investment in infrastructure, and paid sick leave for all workers. Jack Ciattarelli has made revitalizing New Jersey’s economy a centerpiece of his campaign, and supports cutting corporate taxes, expanding opportunity zones, government funded infrastructure, and tax breaks for small businesses.

COVID-19

Early in the pandemic, Governor Murphy imposed a series of strict restrictions to combat the spread of COVID-19, including the forced closure of businesses, capacity limits, and mask mandates. Murphy was criticized for an executive order that forced nursing homes to accept patients positive for COVID-19, which opponents say inflated New Jersey’s death toll. Recently, Governor Murphy has lifted most COVID-19 restrictions due to New Jersey’s success with vaccinations, with over 64.4% of the population having at least one dose. Republican Nominee Jack Ciattarelli has harshly criticized Murphy’s tactics during the pandemic, arguing that his lockdowns caused irreversible damage to many small businesses. Ciattarelli has made the recovery of these enterprises a core tenet of his campaign platform. In August 2021, Murphy imposed a mask mandate for K-12 public schools, which Ciattarelli argues is an issue for parents to decide.

Gun Policy

Ciattarelli supports concealed carry legislation, opposes red flag laws, and wants it to be easier to obtain a firearm in New Jersey. Murphy has advocated for stricter gun control and recently proposed a series of 12 gun control measures, among them requiring gun owners to pass a safety course, raising the age to own a firearm to 21, and banning some types of weapons.

Abortion

Governor Murphy has encouraged the New Jersey Legislature to pass the Reproductive Freedom Act, which would codify the Roe v. Wade (1973) decision into state law by amending the state constitution to explicitly guarantee the right to an abortion. The act also would expand taxpayer funding for elective abortions. Republican Nominee Jack Ciatarelli opposes the act, calling it “extremist” and arguing that no taxpayer funds should go towards paying for the termination of a pregnancy. Ciattarelli is generally regarded as pro-life, receiving just a 20% lifetime score from the Planned Parenthood Political Action Fund.

Endorsements

21 New Jersey county Republican organizations, Donald DiFrancesco (former NJ Governor from 2001-2002), Jeff Van Drew (U.S. Representative of NJ’s 2nd congressional district)

Sources

New Jersey Globe
NBC New York