Party Leaders Win Victory To Block Buono Challengers

STATE – The Democratic State Committee won victories in its bid to knock would-be gubernatorial candidates off of the June primary ballot.

Judge Jeff S. Masin disqualified 317 of the 1,281 signatures Carl Bergmanson obtained on his nominating petitions in a ruling on Wednesday, leaving him short of the 1,000 needed to appear on the ballot. Two hundred petition signers were disqualified as unregistered voters; 41 were disqualified because they were registered Republicans, and 38 were disqualified because they also appeared on the nominating petitions of candidate Jeff Boss.

Bergmanson unsuccessfully argued that the Democratic State Committee violated the limits of its legal authority by challenging the nominating petitions of the four candidate who sought to run against the organization-supported campaign of state Sen. Barbara Buono.

Another would-be candidate, Edison resident William Araujo, conceded to the state committee’s challenge and will also not appear on the primary ballot, according to a PolitickerNJ report.

Boss was also removed from the unofficial list of primary candidates posted on the state Division of Elections website at 11:30 a.m. this morning.

Troy Webster, who is running primarily to secure a more advantageous ballot position for East Orange Mayor Bob Bowser in his re-election bid, is the only remaining challenger Buono in the Democratic primary.

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