Republican candidate Steve Lonegan says the Oct. 16 special Senate election will be a referendum on health care.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry joined Lonegan on the campaign trail Tuesday, the day after the federal government partially shut down over a partisan fight over funding for a new health care law.
Lonegan applauded House Republicans for "holding the line'' in Washington. But his opponent, Democrat Cory Booker, circulated a petition Tuesday urging Congress to end the shutdown by funding Obamacare.
Booker says the health care overhaul expands health insurance access to millions of Americans. Lonegan says the law is a government intrusion.
Perry also planned to participate in a Lonegan rally in Hasbrouck Heights.
Lonegan is running against Booker to serve the remaining term of the late U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg.