23rd Legislative District (New Jersey)
|New Jersey's 23th Legislative district|
|New Jersey State Senator||Michael J. Doherty (R)|
|New Jersey General Assemblymembers||John DiMaio (R)
Erik Peterson (R)
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, 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, Bridgewater Township, Peapack-Gladstone, Raritan Borough and South Bound Brook, 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.
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. The 23rd District had 140,869 registered voters as of November 2013, of whom 63,010 (44.7%) were registered as Unaffiliated, 30,022 (21.3%) were registered as Democrats, 47,677 (33.8%) were registered as Republicans and 160 (0.1%) were registered to other parties.
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.
Changes made as part of the New Jersey Legislative apportionment in 2011 added Bedminster Township (from District 16), Bound Brook (from District 16), Bridgewater (from District 16), Califon (from District 24), Peapack-Gladstone (from District 16), Raritan Borough (from District 16), South Bound Brook (from District 16) and Tewksbury Township (from District 24), while removed from the district as of 2011 were Allamuchy Township (to District 24), Belvidere Town (to District 24), Blairstown Township (to District 24), Delaware Township (to District 16), East Amwell Township (to District 15), Flemington Borough (to District 16), Frelinghuysen Township (to District 24), Hardwick Township (to District 24), Hope Township (to District 24), Independence Township (to District 24), Knowlton Township (to District 24), Lambertville City (to District 15), Liberty Township (to District 24), Oxford Township (to District 24), Raritan Township (to District 16), Readington Township (to District 16), Stockton Borough (to District 16), West Amwell Township (to District 15) and White Township (to District 24).
Changes to the district made as part of the 2001 apportionment, based on the results of the 2000 United States Census, added Glen Gardner, Hampton, High Bridge and Lebanon Township (from District 24), and removed Hopewell Township (to the District 3), and both Hopewell Borough and Pennington Borough (to District 15).
For the 2014-2015 Session, the district is represented in the State Senate by Michael J. Doherty (R, Washington Township, Warren County) and in the General Assembly by John DiMaio (R, Hackettstown) and Erik Peterson (R, Franklin Township, Hunterdon County).
Governor of New Jersey Brendan Byrne nominated State Senator Stephen B. 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.
Following the death of Walter E. Foran, 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. 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.
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.
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. Doherty went on to win the November special election, defeating Democratic candidate Harvey Baron to fill the remaining two years of the term. Karrow's Senate term ended on November 23, 2009 when Doherty was sworn into office.
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