Old Bridge, N.J. — In September 2009 I moved to the Garden State from New York and on Tuesday I cast my first vote in New Jersey; the vote was in the 12th Congressional District Republican Primary. In October 2009 I did register as an independent, but I was ineligible to vote in the November elections because I did not meet the minimum residency requirements.
Almost all of the 13 New Jersey Congressional Districts have primary races in one if not both of the major political parties. To be honest, I have not been following the races closely and thought I would be unable to vote in the primary since I was registered without a party affiliation. On the eve of the election, I did go to the State of New Jersey’s Election Division website and found that as a first time voter with no party affiliation I could declare an affiliation at the polls and vote.
I live in the New Jersey 12th Congressional District and our incumbent Congressman is six term House Democrat Rush Holt. Congressman Holt was first elected in 1998 and has no primary challenger; in 2008 he won reelection with 63.12% of the vote.
I live in Middlesex County and the US Department of Justice has Federal personnel observing the elections here; the reason given for the monitoring is to uphold the Voting Rights Act, particularly ensuring Spanish speaking voters have mandated assistance.
I did not see any electioneering during the campaign; I suspect that is due to the fact that Congressman Holt has no Democratic opponent and Republican candidates targeted registered Republican voters.
Having voted in New York for forty years, I was expecting some grief with declaring a party affiliation at the polls. I had a very pleasant voting experience; I was the only voter there at 7:15 PM. The first person I spoke to directed me to the appropriate table for my election district; the folks at that table new exactly how to change my affiliation. The people working the polls were pleasant, efficient and helpful. The voting booth was more modern than the ones in New York and I did have to spend a moment reading the instructions on how to cast my ballot.
In my Congressional District there are two Republican candidates; Scott Sipprelle and David Corsi. I did visit their respective websites and could easily support either candidate. They both have sound economic platforms supporting major tax reform, less Federal spending, better budget control and deficit reduction. Both Republican candidates support stronger border protection and have solid positions on national defense.
It was a difficult decision but I did cast my vote for David Corsi. Mr. Corsi is pro-life and takes a stand on reforming Congressional pay and pensions; his website also points out that New Jersey is “Dead Last” on the return of Federal tax dollars. The fact that the Garden State is number 50 when it comes to return on tax dollars sent to Washington speaks volumes for the current New Jersey delegation to Congress.
The final primary election results are not in yet but Mr. Sipprelle is currently leading. I wish the winner well; the Republican candidate will have an uphill battle trying to unseat Holt.
“Feds to monitor today’s primary”, Home News Tribune, June 8, 2010, page 1.