The Curse of the 38th

Since the Bergen County-based 38th legislative district was created, every State Senator has eventually lost re-election. Republican Frederick Wendel, elected in 1971, lost to Democrat John Skevin in 1973. Skevin was defeated by Republican John Paolella in 1981, and Paolella was ousted by Democrat Paul Contillo in 1983. Contillo was unseated by Republican Louis Kosco in 1991, and Kosco lost in 2001 to Democrat Joseph Coniglio. The district was viewed as politically competitive until ’01 redistricting, when heavily Democratic Fair Lawn and Fort Lee were added to the 38th. Coniglio, who had been viewed as a possible candidate for the state Board of Public Utilities earlier this year, seems to be in strong shape to break the curse, but then again, so did Contillo (when he beat Kosco in 1987), and Kosco, who held the job for ten years. Possible Republican Senate candidates in 2007 include Hasbrouck Heights Mayor Ronald Jones , the Director of Security for Hackensack Medical Center, and Paramus Councilman Keith Zakheim, who must first win re-election next year.

The Curse of the 38th