23rd Legislative District (New Jersey)

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New Jersey's 23rd Legislative District
New Jersey Legislative Districts Map (2011) D23 hl.svg
Senator Michael J. Doherty (R)
Assembly members John DiMaio (R)
Erik Peterson (R)
Registration
Demographics
Population 222,972
Voting-age population 175,967
Registered voters 141,223

New Jersey's 23rd Legislative District is one of 40 in the New Jersey Legislature. As of the 2011 apportionment, the district includes the Hunterdon County municipalities of Alexandria Township, Bethlehem Township, Bloomsbury Borough, Califon Borough, Clinton Town, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Frenchtown Borough, Glen Gardner Borough, Hampton Borough, High Bridge Borough, Holland Township, Kingwood Township, Lebanon Borough, Lebanon Township, Milford Borough, Tewksbury Township and Union Township, the Somerset County municipalities of Bedminster Township, Bound Brook Borough, Bridgewater Township, Peapack-Gladstone Borough, Raritan Borough and South Bound Brook Borough, and the Warren County municipalities of Alpha Borough, Franklin Township, Greenwich Township, Hackettstown Town, Harmony Township, Lopatcong Township, Mansfield Township, Phillipsburg Town, Pohatcong Township, Washington Borough and Washington Township.[1][2]

Demographic characteristics[edit]

As of the 2010 United States Census, the district had a population of 222,972, of whom 175,967 (76.5%) were of voting age. The racial makeup of the district was 208,724 (90.8%) White, 7,216 (3.1%) African American, 319 (0.1%) Native American, 6,670 (2.9%) Asian, 67 (0.0%) Pacific Islander, 3,484 (1.5%) from some other race, and 3,492 (1.5%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14,158 (6.2%) of the population.[3] The 23rd District had 141,223 registered voters as of November 2015, of whom 64,774 (45.9%) were registered as unaffiliated, 29,470 (20.9%) were registered as Democrats, 46,800 (33.1%) were registered as Republicans and 179 (0.1%) were registered to other parties.[4]

As of 2000, the district had the largest population of any in the state and the second-highest land area, making it one of the least densely populated districts in the state. The district had a small minority population, with comparatively few African American, Asian and Hispanic residents. The district had the highest municipal tax rate in the state, but lower than average school and county taxes leave the overall rate near the statewide median. Registered Republicans outnumber Democrats by a 2-1 margin.[5][6]

Apportionment history[edit]

Upon the creation of the 40-district legislative map in 1973, the 23rd District consisted of central Morris County including Madison, Morristown, Dover, and Town and Township of Boonton.[7] Following the 1981 redistricting, the 23rd shifted to the rural areas of western New Jersey including the Borough and Township of Hopewell and Pennington in Mercer County, all of Hunterdon County except East Amwell Township, in Warren County Franklin Township, Greenwich Township, and the Borough and Township of Washington, western Morris County, and Stanhope in Sussex County.[8] For the 1991 redistricting following the 1990 Census, the district shifted to most of Hunterdon County except for some municipalities in the northern part of the county, all of Warren County, and the Mercer County portion remaining unchanged.[9]

In the 2001 redistricting, the Mercer County municipalities were eliminated from the 23rd with the district only consisting of Hunterdon County save for Tewksbury Township and Califon and all of Warren County.[10] The district experienced a major change following the 2011 redistricting; the 23rd currently consists of southern Warren County including Phillipsburg, Washington, and Hackettstown, most of northern Hunterdon County, and a spur into Somerset County via Bedminster, Peapack-Gladstone, Bridgewater, Raritan Borough, Bound Brook, and South Bound Brook.

Political representation[edit]

The district is represented for the 2016–2017 Legislative Session (Senate, General Assembly) in the State Senate by Michael J. Doherty (R, Washington Township) and in the General Assembly by John DiMaio (R, Hackettstown) and Erik Peterson (R, Franklin Township, Hunterdon County).[11][12]

Election history[edit]

Despite the historic Republican nature of Morris County, Democrats swept the three legislative seats up for election in 1973: Stephen B. Wiley, who was also elected in a special election to complete an unexpired Senate term under the old at-large Morris County district, was elected to a four-year Senate term from this district, Gordon MacInnes and Rosemarie Totaro won both Assembly seats as well.[13] MacInnes and Totaro would both be defeated for re-election in 1975 but Totaro would again serve one term in the Assembly after winning in 1977 and MacInnes would later serve four years in the Senate from the geographically-similar 25th District in 1993. Governor of New Jersey Brendan Byrne nominated State Senator Wiley to the New Jersey Supreme Court in 1977, his nomination was approved by the Senate, but was rejected by the Supreme Court, which ruled that as Wiley had voted to raise the salary of justices of the Supreme Court in 1974, he could not be appointed to serve on the court until after his term of office expired.[14] Wiley served the remainder of his term in the Senate but was defeated for re-election in 1977 by Republican John H. Dorsey.

After the 1981 redistricting, Senator Walter E. Foran and Assemblyman Karl Weidel, who had been elected from the 14th District in the previous election, became representatives from the 23rd. Following the death of Foran in 1986, Dick Zimmer filled the vacant seat in the Senate and William E. Schluter won Zimmer's Assembly seat, and then continued on to the State Senate after Zimmer succeeded Jim Courter in the United States House of Representatives in 1991.[15] Schluter's Assembly seat was filled by Leonard Lance.

On January 24, 2009, a special election was held by a convention of Republican committee members from Hunterdon and Warren counties to fill the Senate vacancy created when Leonard Lance was elected to Congress. Marcia A. Karrow defeated Michael J. Doherty in the special election by a margin of 195 votes to 143. Doherty announced he would run against Karrow a second time in the June 2009 primary, when she would be running as the incumbent.[16]

The Hunterdon and Warren County Republican committee members held another special convention on February 21, 2009 to fill Karrow's vacant Assembly seat. In the contest, Warren County Freeholder John DiMaio defeated Hunterdon County Freeholders Matt Holt and Erik Peterson.[17][18]

On June 2, 2009, Doherty defeated Karrow in the Republican Senate primary by a margin of 52%-48%, making her the only incumbent to lose a primary battle that year.[19] Doherty went on to win the November special election, defeating Democratic candidate Harvey Baron to fill the remaining two years of the term.[20] Karrow's Senate term ended on November 23, 2009 when Doherty was sworn into office.[21]

Senators and Assembly members elected from the district are as follows:[22]

Session Senate Assembly
1974–1975 Stephen B. Wiley (D) Gordon MacInnes (D) Rosemarie Totaro (D)
1976–1977 James J. Barry, Jr. (R) John H. Dorsey (R)
1978–1979 John H. Dorsey (R) James J. Barry, Jr. (R) Rosemarie Totaro (D)
1980–1981 James J. Barry, Jr. (R) Arthur R. Albohn (R)
1982–1983 Walter E. Foran (R) Karl Weidel (R) Dick Zimmer (R)
1984–1985 Walter E. Foran (R)[n 1] 
Karl Weidel (R) Dick Zimmer (R)
1986–1987 Karl Weidel (R)[n 2] Dick Zimmer (R)[n 3] 
C. Richard Kamin (R)[n 4] 
Dick Zimmer (R)[n 3] William E. Schluter (R)[n 5]
1988–1989 Dick Zimmer (R)[n 6] C. Richard Kamin (R) William E. Schluter (R)[n 7]
1990–1991[23] C. Richard Kamin (R) William E. Schluter (R)
William E. Schluter (R)[n 7] Leonard Lance (R)[n 8]
1992–1993 William E. Schluter (R) Chuck Haytaian (R) Leonard Lance (R)
1994–1995[24] William E. Schluter (R) Chuck Haytaian (R) Leonard Lance (R)
1996–1997 Connie Myers (R) Leonard Lance (R)
1998–1999[25] William E. Schluter (R) Connie Myers (R) Leonard Lance (R)
2000–2001[26] Connie Myers (R) Leonard Lance (R)
2002–2003[27] Leonard Lance (R) Connie Myers (R) Michael J. Doherty (R)
2004–2005[28] Leonard Lance (R) Connie Myers (R) Michael J. Doherty (R)
2006–2007 Marcia A. Karrow (R) Michael J. Doherty (R)
2008–2009 Leonard Lance (R)[n 9] Marcia A. Karrow (R)[n 10] Michael J. Doherty (R)[n 11]
Marcia A. Karrow (R)[n 10] John DiMaio (R)[n 12]
Michael J. Doherty (R)[n 11] Erik Peterson (R)[n 13]
2010–2011[29] Michael J. Doherty (R) John DiMaio (R) Erik Peterson (R)
2012–2013 Michael J. Doherty (R) John DiMaio (R) Erik Peterson (R)
2014–2015[30] Michael J. Doherty (R) John DiMaio (R) Erik Peterson (R)
2016–2017 John DiMaio (R) Erik Peterson (R)
  1. ^ Died December 8, 1986
  2. ^ Resigned June 13, 1986 to join staff of Department of Insurance
  3. ^ a b Elected to the Senate in March 1987 special election, sworn in on April 23, 1987
  4. ^ Elected to the Assembly in August 1986 special election, sworn in on September 8, 1986
  5. ^ Elected to the Assembly in July 1987 special election, sworn in on September 10, 1987
  6. ^ Resigned January 3, 1991 upon election to Congress
  7. ^ a b Appointed to the Senate on January 29, 1991
  8. ^ Appointed to the Assembly on February 21, 1991
  9. ^ Resigned January 3, 2009 upon election to Congress
  10. ^ a b Appointed to the Senate on February 9, 2009, lost June 2009 special primary election, served until November 23, 2009
  11. ^ a b Won Senate seat in November 2009 special election, sworn in on November 23, 2009
  12. ^ Appointed to the Assembly on March 16, 2009
  13. ^ Appointed to the Assembly on December 7, 2009

Election results[edit]

Senate[edit]

New Jersey general election, 1973[31]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Stephen B. Wiley 27,303 53.1
Republican Josephine S. Margetts 24,157 46.9
Total votes 51,460 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1977[32]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican John H. Dorsey 30,882 54.3
Democratic Stephen B. Wiley 25,981 45.7
Total votes 56,863 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1981[33]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Walter E. Foran 37,494 75.1
Democratic Samuel J. Gugliemini 12,431 24.9
Total votes 49,925 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1983[34]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Walter E. Foran 27,224 69.2
Democratic William Martin, Jr. 12,101 30.8
Total votes 39,325 100.0
Special election, March 24, 1987[35]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Richard A. Zimmer 5,616 80.9
Democratic Marianne Nelson 1,327 19.1
Total votes 6,943 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1987[36]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Richard A. Zimmer 27,699 100.0
Total votes 27,699 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1991[37]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Schluter 34,936 72.4
Democratic George Goceljak 13,317 27.6
Total votes 48,253 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1993[38]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Schluter 51,856 91.7
Libertarian Roger Bacon 4,675 8.3
Total votes 56,531 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1997[39][40]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Schluter 42,221 61.3
Democratic Austin “Ken” Kutscher, M.D. 23,094 33.5
Conservative Michael P. Kelly 2,770 4.0
Independent Daniel Z. Seyler 762 1.1
Total votes 68,847 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2001[41]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 43,721 69.3
Democratic Frederick P. Cook 19,407 30.7
Total votes 63,128 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2003[42]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 29,775 68.0
Democratic Frederick P. Cook 13,994 32.0
Total votes 43,769 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2007[43]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 32,198 67.0
Democratic Harvey Baron 13,124 27.3
For State Senate Daniel Z. Seyler 2,763 5.7
Total votes 48,085 100.0
Special election, November 3, 2009[44]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Michael J. Doherty 51,960 71.4
Democratic Harvey Baron 20,851 28.6
Total votes 72,811 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2011[45]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Michael J. Doherty 21,596 61.3
Democratic John Graf, Jr. 12,579 35.7
For State Senate Daniel Z. Seyler 1,040 3.0
Total votes 35,215 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2013[46]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Michael J. Doherty 37,477 67.6
Democratic Gerard R. Bowers 17,311 31.2
Seyler. Us Daniel Z. Seyler 672 1.2
Total votes 55,460 100.0

Assembly[edit]

New Jersey general election, 1973[31]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Gordon A. MacInnes, Jr. 27,876 28.0
Democratic Rosemarie Totaro 24,660 24.8
Republican John H. Dorsey 23,757 23.8
Republican Albert W. Merck 23,322 23.4
Total votes 99,615 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1975[47]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican James J. Barry, Jr. 24,770 25.6
Republican John H. Dorsey 24,734 25.6
Democratic Rosemarie Totaro 24,160 25.0
Democratic Gordon A. MacInnes, Jr. 23,058 23.8
Total votes 96,722 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1977[32]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican James J. Barry, Jr. 32,479 30.0
Democratic Rosemarie Totaro 28,526 26.4
Republican Joseph J. Maraziti 25,996 24.0
Democratic Jerome C. Kessler 21,253 19.6
Total votes 108,254 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1979[48]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican James J. Barry, Jr. 24,232 31.5
Republican Arthur R. Albohn 20,856 27.1
Democratic Rosemarie Totaro 17,782 23.1
Democratic Douglas H. Romaine 14,152 18.4
Total votes 77,022 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1981[33]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Karl Weidel 34,588 35.6
Republican Richard A. Zimmer 33,463 34.5
Democratic James H. Knox 16,631 17.1
Democratic Frederick J. Katz, Jr. 12,438 12.8
Total votes 97,120 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1983[34]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Richard A. Zimmer 26,311 34.6
Republican Karl Weidel 26,084 34.3
Democratic Barbara J. MacDonald 13,070 17.2
Democratic Claiborne L. Northrop 10,523 13.8
Total votes 75,988 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1985[49]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Richard A. Zimmer 34,051 44.0
Republican Karl Weidel 32,587 42.1
Democratic Richard C. Allen 10,774 13.9
Total votes 77,412 100.0
Special election, August 26, 1986[50]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican C. Richard Kamin 4,474 57.4
Democratic Ted Savage 2,957 37.9
Independent Richard C. Allen 369 4.7
Total votes 7,800 100.0
Special election, July 28, 1987[51]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican William E. Schluter 2,577 75.2
Democratic George Murtaugh 848 24.8
Total votes 3,425 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1987[36]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican William E. Schluter 23,589 36.3
Republican Dick Kamin 23,073 35.5
Democratic Edward J. Boccher 9,344 14.4
Democratic Frederick J. Katz, Jr. 9,012 13.9
Total votes 65,018 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1989[52]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Schluter 38,345 40.3
Republican Dick Kamin 36,853 38.7
Democratic Jane L. Weller 20,032 21.0
Total votes 95,230 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1991[37]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Garabed “Chuck” Haytaian 31,372 32.8
Republican Leonard Lance 28,879 30.2
Democratic Rosemarie A. Albanese 14,621 15.3
Democratic Diane Bowman 12,278 12.8
Citizen Not Politician Charles D. Meyer 5,163 5.4
Reduce Insurance Rates Frederick P. Cook 2,373 2.5
Populist ('84-'96) Joseph J. Notarangelo 919 1.0
Total votes 95,605 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1993[38]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Garabed “Chuck” Haytaian 47,251 41.3
Republican Leonard Lance 45,643 39.9
Democratic Edward F. Dragan 21,425 18.7
Total votes 114,319 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1995[53]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 24,134 33.5
Republican Connie Myers 21,358 29.7
Democratic Frank C. Van Horn 16,067 22.3
Independent Michael Kelly 5,913 8.2
Independent Paul Wallace 4,533 6.3
Total votes 72,005 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1997[54][25]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 41,880 32.7
Republican Connie Myers 37,852 29.6
Democratic Sharon B. Ransavage 25,237 19.7
Democratic John Patrick Barnes 19,798 15.5
Conservative Paul Wallace 3,242 2.5
Total votes 128,009 100.0
New Jersey general election, 1999[55]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Leonard Lance 27,770 34.4
Republican Connie Myers 25,499 31.6
Democratic Thomas E. Palmieri 14,762 18.3
Democratic J. Rebecca Goff 12,637 15.7
Total votes 80,668 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2001[56]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Connie Myers 39,313 32.4
Republican Mike Doherty 35,345 29.2
Democratic J. Rebecca Goff 19,995 16.5
Democratic Thomas E. Palmieri 19,454 16.1
Warren/Hunterdon Independent Mike King 7,060 5.8
Total votes 121,167 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2003[57]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Connie Myers 26,122 30.9
Republican Michael J. Doherty 25,554 30.3
Democratic Brian D. Smith 17,100 20.3
Democratic Cynthia L. Ege 15,658 18.5
Total votes 84,434 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2005[58]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Michael J. Doherty 41,753 31.8
Republican Marcia A. Karrow 38,623 29.4
Democratic Janice L. Kovach 27,485 20.9
Democratic Scott McDonald 23,387 17.8
Total votes 131,248 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2007[59]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Marcia A. Karrow 28,904 31.0
Republican Michael J. Doherty 28,857 31.0
Democratic Dominick C. Santini Jr. 18,333 19.7
Democratic Peter G. Maurer 17,119 18.4
Total votes 93,213 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2009[60]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican John DiMaio 49,137 35.3
Republican Erik Peterson 48,067 34.5
Democratic William J. Courtney 21,997 15.8
Democratic Tammeisha Smith 19,939 14.3
Total votes 139,140 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2011[61]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican John DiMaio 21,289 31.2
Republican Erik Peterson 21,074 30.9
Democratic Karen Carroll 13,369 19.6
Democratic Scott McDonald 12,420 18.2
Total votes 68,152 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2013[30]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Erik Peterson 35,604 33.8
Republican John DiMaio 35,458 33.6
Democratic John Valentine 17,828 16.9
Democratic Ralph Drake 16,548 15.7
Total votes 105,438 100.0
New Jersey general election, 2015[62]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican John DiMaio 17,654 32.4
Republican Erik Peterson 17,071 31.3
Democratic Maria Rodriguez 10,056 18.4
Democratic Marybeth Maciag 9,759 17.9
Total votes 54,540 100.0

References[edit]

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  13. ^ Edge, Wally (February 18, 2009). "Through parts of four decades, ten districts that have never flipped". Politicker NJ. Retrieved July 26, 2015. District 25: [sic] Democrats have won a few times in heavily Republican Morris County. They swept in 1973, when Stephen Wiley won a State Senate seat and Gordon MacInnes and Rosemarie Totaro went to the Assembly after beating John Dorsey and Assemblyman Albert Merck. 
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