TRENTON – Legislation that would move New Jersey’s February presidential primary election back to June, to be held with the regular partisan primary elections, was advanced Thursday by a Senate committee.
The bill was recently approved 76-0 by the Assembly. It was released Thursday by the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee.
“When we first moved New Jersey’s presidential primary up six years ago, it was with the intent that New Jersey be more than a fundraising stopover for presidential hopefuls,” said Asm. John Wisniewski (D-Middlesex). “Now, all we are doing is paying $8 million to $12 million every four years for the privilege of selecting presidential candidates with fully half of the nation. Moving the primary back to June just makes sense, from both a relevance and economic perspective.”
Under the legislation (A-3777), New Jersey’s separate February presidential primary would be eliminated and returned to the regular June primary election, as it was before 2005.
The measure now heads to the full Senate for further consideration. Should it receive Senate approval, because of minor amendments such as language regarding mail-in ballots, the bill will have to come back to the Assembly for final concurrence before going to the governor.
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