MONTCLAIR, NJ - Longtime community activist, Lawrence Hamm has announced his intent to run for a U.S. Senate seat in the 2020 Democratic primary.
The 65-year-old Montclair resident has devoted his life's work to activism and announced via social media on Thursday that he will challenge Cory Booker in the 2020 Democratic primary for U.S. Senate and host a campaign meeting on Sunday, December 22.
"I am planning to run as a candidate for US Senate in 2020. If you are interested in supporting or volunteering for this effort then I invite you to attend a meeting to discuss my campaign this Sunday, December 22nd, 3pm at REFAL, 271 So. 9th St in Newark, NJ. (Corner of So. 9th St. & 13th Av.)," he wrote.
Booker has devoted his time to campaigning for the Democratic presidential nomination, however, a law signed last year by Governor Phil Murphy allows Booker to run for both seats simultaneously. If Booker becomes the vice presidential nominee, this means that he could also be listed on the ballot for Senate at the same time.
According to his bio, while a student at Arts High School in Newark in 1971, Hamm led a student protest at the Gateway Hotel. He and 700 fellow Arts High students took over two floors of the hotel.
The reason was in protest of the Newark teachers' strike. Those with Hamm at the time, said that because of the strike, school was out and students were told that they might not be able to graduate. Students also took this opportunity to demand better facilities and books.
Mayor Ken Gibson was in office at the time and approached Hamm to join the Newark School Board. At the age of 17, Gibson appointed Hamm, making him the youngest school board member in the United States, serving from 1971 to 1974.
Hamm delayed going to college for three years in order to serve his community. In 1974, he went on to attend Princeton University and graduated with a degree in politics.
In 1983, Hamm founded People's Organization for Progress, which is an activism group that is often seen marching and protesting national and local injustice.
During the last Presidential election, Hamm became the chair for NJ for Bernie Sanders.
Soon after his announcement, supporters from near and far have flooded his timeline and social media in support, with some using the hashtag #GoHamm2020.