17th Legislative District (New Jersey)

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New Jersey's 17th Legislative district
Census Bureau map of New Jersey's 17th Legislative District.gif
New Jersey State Senator Bob Smith (D)
New Jersey General Assemblymembers Upendra J. Chivukula (D)
Joseph V. Egan (D)
Registration 37.1% Democratic
10.1% Republican
Demographics 46.5% White
19.3% Black/African American
0.4% Native American
20.4% Asian
0.0% Hawaiian/Pacific Islander
9.9% Other race
3.5% Two or more races
21.6% Hispanic
Population 235,142
Voting-age population 184,455
Registered voters 126,868

New Jersey's 17th Legislative District is one of 40 in the New Jersey Legislature. As of the 2011 apportionment, the district includes the Middlesex County municipalities of Milltown Borough, New Brunswick City, North Brunswick Township, Piscataway Township, along with the Somerset County municipality of Franklin Township.[1][2]

Demographic characteristics[edit]

As of the 2010 United States Census, the district had a population of 235,142, of whom 184,455 (78.4%) were of voting age. The racial makeup of the district was 109,419 (46.5%) White, 45,283 (19.3%) African American, 1,054 (0.4%) Native American, 48,004 (20.4%) Asian, 60 (0.0%) Pacific Islander, 23,206 (9.9%) from some other race, and 8,116 (3.5%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 50,812 (21.6%) of the population.[3] The district had 126,868 registered voters as of November 2013, of whom 66,797 (52.7%) were registered as Unaffiliated, 47,129 (37.1%) were registered as Democrats, 12,805 (10.1%) were registered as Republicans and 137 (0.1%) were registered to other parties.[4]

Home ownership was high. The district had a large population of Asian Americans, third highest in the state, while having the third-smallest population of senior citizens among the 40 legislative districts. Registered Democrats outnumbered Republicans by a 3 to 1 margin.[5][6]

Apportionment history[edit]

Changes to the district made as part of the New Jersey Legislative apportionment in 2011, based on the results of the 2010 Census resulted in the removal of Highland Park (to District 18).[7]

As part of the 2001 apportionment, based on the results of the 2000 United States Census, changes were made which removed Bound Brook (moved to the District 16), Middlesex Borough (to the District 22), Plainfield City (to District 22) and South Plainfield borough (to the 18th District) and added Franklin Township (from the 16th Legislative District), Milltown Borough (from District 18) and North Brunswick Township (also from District 18).[8]

Political representation[edit]

The district is represented in the New Jersey Senate by Bob Smith (D, Piscataway) and in the General Assembly by Upendra J. Chivukula (D, Franklin Township) and Joseph V. Egan (D, New Brunswick)[9][10]

Election history[edit]

After 20 years in office, John A. Lynch, Sr. did not run for re-election in 1977, due to illness. Assembly Speaker William J. Hamilton ran for the vacant Senate seat and Joseph D. Patero and David C. Schwartz were the Democratic candidates for Assembly in a district that voted for Democrats by a 2-1 margin.[11]

After losing the support of the Middlesex County Democratic Organization, Assemblymember Angela L. Perun announced in March 1985 that she had switched parties and would run as a Republican in that year's general election, after having served two terms in office as a Democrat and having been a vocal opponent of the Reagan Administration.[12][13] Bob Smith was given Perun's spot and the Assembly ballot, and he won election together with David C. Schwartz.[14]

Despite his confidence that he would win re-election if he chose to run, David C. Schwartz decided not to run for re-election in 1991 after seven terms of office, saying that he was reluctant to serve in the minority party in the new legislative term.[15] Jerry Green took Schwartz's open seat in the general Election.[14]

Bob Smith was elected to his first Senate term in November 2001 to fill the seat vacated after Lynch retired.[16] Jerry Green was relocated to the 22nd Legislative District in redistricting following the 2000 United States Census, and the two open Assembly seats were filled by Upendra J. Chivukula and Joseph V. Egan. Chivukula's election made him the first South Asian to be elected to the New Jersey Legislature and the third Indian American to be elected to a state assembly in the United States.[17][18]

Session State Senate[19] Assembly[14]
1976-1977 John A. Lynch, Sr. William J. Hamilton Joseph D. Patero
1978-1979 William J. Hamilton Joseph D. Patero David C. Schwartz
1980-1981 Joseph D. Patero David C. Schwartz
1982-1983 John A. Lynch, Jr. Angela L. Perun David C. Schwartz
1984-1985 John A. Lynch, Jr. Angela L. Perun David C. Schwartz
1986-1987 David C. Schwartz Bob Smith
1988-1989 John A. Lynch, Jr. David C. Schwartz Bob Smith
1990-1991[20] David C. Schwartz Bob Smith
1992-1993 John A. Lynch, Jr. Jerry Green Bob Smith
1994-1995[21] John A. Lynch, Jr. Jerry Green Bob Smith
1996-1997 Jerry Green Bob Smith
1998-1999[22] John A. Lynch, Jr. Jerry Green Bob Smith
2000-2001[23] Jerry Green Bob Smith
2002-2003[24] Bob Smith Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2004-2005[25] Bob Smith Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2006-2007 Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2008-2009 Bob Smith Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2010-2011[26] Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2012-2013[27] Bob Smith Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula
2014-2015[28] Bob Smith Joseph V. Egan Upendra J. Chivukula

References[edit]

  1. ^ Districts by Number, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  2. ^ Municipalities (sorted by 2011 legislative district), New Jersey Department of State. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  3. ^ DP-1: Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 - 2010 Demographic Profile Data for General Assembly District 17 (2010), New Jersey, United States Census Bureau. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  4. ^ Statewide Voter Registration Summary, New Jersey Department of State, November 28, 2013. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  5. ^ District 17 Profile, Rutgers University, backed up by the Internet Archive as of June 9, 2007. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  6. ^ 2005 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book. Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy. p. 80. 
  7. ^ Municipalities sorted by legislative districts, New Jersey Department of State
  8. ^ Legislative Districts, New Jersey Legislature, backed up by the Internet Archive as of December 6, 1998. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  9. ^ Legislative Roster 2014-2015 Session, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  10. ^ District 17 Legislators, New Jersey Legislature. Accessed January 30, 2014.
  11. ^ Narvaez, Alfonso A. "Democrats Running Strong in Campaigns in 13th, 17th and 21st Districts", The New York Times, October 17, 1977. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  12. ^ Staff. "THE REGION; Jersey Lawmaker Switching Parties", The New York Times, March 15, 1985. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  13. ^ Staff. "ASSEMBLYWOMAN SWITCHES TO REPUBLICAN SIDE", The Philadelphia Inquirer, March 15, 1985. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  14. ^ a b c NJ Assembly 17 - History, OurCampaigns.com. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  15. ^ Sullivan, Joseph F. "Redistricting Worries Democrats", The New York Times, April 7, 1991. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  16. ^ Ackerman, Spencer. "To fill Lynch's big shoes, Smith stresses education", The Daily Targum, October 30, 2001. Accessed April 23, 2008. "Now, Assemblyman and former Piscataway Mayor Bob Smith is looking to take over for retiring State Sen. John Lynch, the powerful democrat castigated by his detractors as running 'the Lynch machine'."
  17. ^ Staff. "President of India gives distinguished service award to State Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula", Somerset Reporter, January 15, 2010. Accessed July 1, 2010. "Chivukula is the first and only South Asian lawmaker in the New Jersey Legislature and the only Asian-American member in the General Assembly. "
  18. ^ Kumar, Tanmaya. "'I went from community issues to mainstream politics'", India Abroad, November 16, 2001. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  19. ^ NJ Senate District 17 - History, OurCampaigns.com. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  20. ^ Staff. "Vote Totals for the Elections Held on Tuesday in New York and New Jersey", The New York Times, November 9, 1989. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  21. ^ Sullivan, Joseph F. "THE 1993 ELECTIONS: New Jersey Legislature; Cut Taxes 30 Percent? Whitman's Top Statehouse Allies Say Not So Fast", The New York Times, November 4, 1993. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  22. ^ Staff. "THE 1997 ELECTIONS: RESULTS; The Races for the New Jersey Assembly", The New York Times, November 5, 1997. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  23. ^ Kocieniewski, David. "THE 1999 ELECTIONS: NEW JERSEY ASSEMBLY; Democrats Win Seats in Three Districts, Narrowing Republicans' Majority", The New York Times, November 3, 1999. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  24. ^ Staff. "THE 2001 ELECTIONS; RESULTS -- The Races for New Jersey", The New York Times, November 8, 2001. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  25. ^ Kocieniewski, David. "THE 2003 ELECTION: THE STATEHOUSE; Democrats Seize Senate And Widen Assembly Gap", The New York Times, November 5, 2003. Accessed June 23, 2010.
  26. ^ Staff. "2009 Election Results", The New York Times, November 9, 2009. Accessed July 1, 2010.
  27. ^ Tzatzev, Aleksi. "Democratic candidates hold onto NJ Legislative seats in Middlesex County", Daily Targum, November 9, 2011. Accessed March 4, 2012. "All three District 17 Democrats celebrated victories over their Republican challengers at a late night Middlesex County Democratic Organization event. Sen. Bob Smith alongside Assemblymen Upendra Chivukula and Joseph Egan — all incumbents — won back their seats yesterday in the N.J. Legislature."
  28. ^ Official List; Candidates for General Assembly For GENERAL ELECTION 11/05/2013 Election, New Jersey Department of State, December 4, 2013. Accessed January 30, 2014.