In the 23rd Legislative District’s battle of endorsements, assemblywoman and state senate candidate Marcia Karrow (R-Flemington) today announced the support of nine mayors from Warren County municipalities.
Karrow is competing with fellow Assemblyman Mike Doherty (R-Washington Twp.) and Hunterdon County Freeholder Matt Holt for the state senate seat being vacated by Congressman-elect Leonard Lance (R-Clinton).
The mayors are Robert Resker (Allamuchy Township), Bonnie Butler (Franklin Township), Thomas Charles (Frelinghuysen Township), Kevin Duffy (Township of Hardwick), Robert Giordano (Independence Township), John Inscho (Liberty Township), Ellen Nerback (Township of Mansfield), Harry Wyant, Jr. (Phillipsburg) and Marianne Van Deursen (Borough of Washington).
There are 22 municipalities in Warren County, 16 of which have partisan-elected Republican mayors.
The endorsements are significant because Warren is Doherty’s home county, while Karrow is from Hunterdon. The selection of the interim replacement for Lance’s seat will be up to the Republican committees from both counties at a special convention late next month, where the more populous Hunterdon County will have a numerical advantage. Doherty, a strict conservative, hopes to overcome that gap by keeping Warren County committee members in lock-step behind him while appealing to conservative committee members from Hunterdon County who would be less inclined to vote for the more moderate Karrow or Holt.
“I think it’s really indicative of my support in Warren County,” said Karrow.
In a statement, Karrow said she would be a state senator in the mold of Lance and former state Senate President Wayne Dumont, served represented Warren County starting in 1951, and was the Republican nominee for governor against Richard J. Hughes in 1965.
"These mayors recognize that I am always there for them, fighting to protect their constituents' wallets and small-town values,” she said.
Doherty has announced a few endorsements from Hunterdon County: former Sheriff Bill Doyle, Raritan Township Deputy Mayor Richard O'Malley and the county’s pro-life caucus.
Doherty did not specifically comment on the mayoral endorsements, but insisted that he’s still confident about his chances at the convention. And if he doesn’t win there, he’s even more confident that he will prevail in the June primary.
He mentioned his public hearings on wood boiling units in Hunterdon and Warren counties, where he said hundreds of residents showed up, as evidence.
“These are hundreds of people coming out the week before Christmas, and there was one person from the legislaturer standing up for them, and that was me. I invited Marcia Karrow to both meetings, I told her she could come and speak, and she wasn’t there,” said Doherty, who has also held public meetings on gay marriage and global warming.
“These are the folks who vote in Republican primaries. These are the folks who will show up on June 2.”