WESTAMPTON – The most ravenous political animals prayed for a collision between state Sen. Dawn Marie Addiego (R-8) and her Democratic Party challenger, Olympian Carl Lewis, at a Burlington County Chamber of Commerce mixer here tonight.
But it never came, as Addiego mingled with a hodgepodge of political insiders and left just as Lewis arrived with a coterie of supporters from a taping of MSNBC’s Hardball with Chris Matthews.
The two rivals passed without any wayward elbows, trailing cocktail mutterings about their latest courtroom clash: the one that secured Lewis a place on the ballot (barring the success of an 11th hour GOP appeal) and reanimated the Democrat with two months remaining on the campaign trail.
Their undramatic face-to-face showdown didn’t deter Addiego from being critical of the 2-1 appeals court ruling Tuesday in Lewis’s favor.
“I am extremely disappointed in the decision,” the senator told PolitickerNJ.com. “Obviously I think they should appeal it. It’s a travesty.”
Addiego said she wasn’t surprised to learn of Lewis’s vagueness on the issues.
“That just brings the point home that you need to live in a district in order to be familiar with the issues of that district,” she jabbed, a reference to Lewis’s nagging obstacle of trying to prove New Jersey residency.
Asked to identify the pertinent issues of her re-election effort, Addiego said, “We need to bring business to New Jersey and keep jobs here. We need to cut the red tape and make government smaller.”