Beaten last year in the 14th District Assembly race, Jamesburg software engineer Adam Bushman told PolitickerNJ.com that he is very likely to sit out a 2009 challenge of Assemblywoman Linda Greenstein (D-Monroe) and Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo (D-Hamilton).
“I don’t think it’s going to happen,” said Bushman, who ran on a Republican ticket with state Sen. Bill Baroni (R-Mercer) and Hamilton Councilman Tom Goodwin in one of the state’s Clean Elections districts, in which candidates raised $10 per donor to qualify for the same amount of state money.
“I’m going to focus on finishing my PhD (in IT management) at this point,” said the former candidate, who has young children.
“I loved the experience,” he added. “There is nothing more elevating and humbling than running for public office and getting a favorable response from people, but it takes away from family and career. Unless there’s a big grassroots motivating call, I’m going to sit on the sidelines for a while.”
Bushman expressed interest in a future run. Now is just not the right time.
“I think with Obama winning the presidential election in November, there will be a honeymoon period through next year, and the Democrats can still ride that wave a little longer,” said Bushman, who admitted he was upset by the intrusion of anti gay marriage PAC Common Sense America into the race that ran ads against Greenstein and made the Democrats eligible for rescue money.
“They ended up with a big cash advantage,” recalled Bushman of the Democrats’ infusion of state dollars to equalize the presence of Common Sense America on the District 14 campaign landscape.
At the time, Bushman and his running mates called for the group to back out of the race.
“We strongly oppose the use of our names by third party organizations. This third party group is causing damage to a successful Clean Elections program in the 14th District, and we’re calling on them to cease and desist,” Bushman had said.
Of his and Goodwin’s efforts last year, “I think we were the better candidates,” he said. “I’ve played sports like football and even karate where the better competitor wins. But that’s often not the case in politics, where a lot of other factors enter into the equation and in this case I think that third party group speaking for us without asking us did not help.”
For his part, Goodwin recently told PolitickerNJ.com‘s Matt Friedman that he is mulling another run. He garned more votes than Bushman and only narrowly lost to DeAngelo.