Choi can’t run as GOP mayoral candidate

There's some buzz that Edison Mayor Jun Choi might try to run for as a Republican now that the GOP has lost their candidate, but the idea is a non-starter.

Reached by PolitickerNJ.com, Choi, who lost the Democratic primary earlier this month, pointed out that that the state's "sore loser" law bars him from running in the general after losing the primary.

Choi is correct. Even though the law does not apply to legislators, freeholders, and even municipal council members, mayors are barred from running again. But a Democrat allied with Choi could switch parties and become the GOP candidate against Democrat Toni Ricigliano.

The law was challenged in 2005, when the late Albert McWilliams, then mayor of Plainfield, lost the Democratic primary to Sharon Robinson-Briggs. McWilliams tried to run as a Republican, but County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi wouldn't let him on the ballot. After a court challenge, Union County Superior Court Judge Walter Barisonek ruled the law unconstitutional, but his decision was overturned on appeal.

Two years earlier, a Superior Court Judge allowed Arline Friscia to run for re-election on the Republican ticket after losing the Democratic State Assembly primary to Joseph Vas.

Choi can’t run as GOP mayoral candidate