NEWARK – Donald Payne Jr. had too many advantages for his opponents to overcome in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for the 10th Congressional District seat that had been held by his father for 23 years.
In addition to family connections and name recognition, Payne Jr. had raised and spent more money than his challengers, and enjoyed preferential ballot position in Essex County. With 96 percent of the District’s voting precincts reporting, Payne had received 60 percent of the vote.
Newark Councilman Ronald C. Rice had 19 percent of the vote, and state Sen. Nia Gill had 17 percent of the ballots cast. Irvington Mayor Wayne Smith garnered just two percent of the votes, while political newcomers Dennis Flynn and Cathy Wright each received less than 1,000 votes.
In the heavily Democratic district, Payne Jr. is virtually assured of winning the general election in November and the seat his father held until his death in March.
“I’m not Donald Payne Sr.,” Payne Jr. told his supporters after the election last night. “Those are big shoes to fill … but I’m standing on his shoulders.”
In the 9th Congressional District race, which pit two incumbent Democrats against each other because New Jersey lost a House seat in the redistricting process following the 2010 Census, Rep. Bill Pascrell from Paterson defeated Bergen County Rep. Steve Rothman. He will face Republican Shmuley Boteach in the general election.
Sixth District Rep. Frank Pallone will face Republican Anna Little in November, after she defeated Ernesto Cullari in the GOP primary.
In the 7th District, Rep. Leonard Lance defeated David Larsen in the Republican primary and will face state Assemblyman Upendra Chivuluka in this fall’s general election.
Eighth District Rep. Albio Sires defeated token opposition in the Democratic primary and will face Republican Maria Karczewski in November.
Rep. Rush Holt won an uncontested Democratic primary in the 12th District, and will face Republican challenger Eric Beck this fall.
State Sen. Joe Kyrillos won the Republican U.S. Senate primary, and will take on U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez in the general election.
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