Top Democrat Enters Special Election for Andrews Seat in New Jersey

Andrews is a Democrat from New Jersey. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Andrews is a Democrat from New Jersey. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Posted February 18, 2014 at 9:03am

Democratic state Sen. Donald Norcross announced Monday in Bellmawr, N.J., his candidacy for the state’s 1st District.  

Norcross is running in the special election to replace Rep. Robert E. Andrews, D-N.J., who announced his resignation earlier this month . Andrews’ resignation is effective Tuesday. “I’m running for Congress because South Jersey needs to continue to have an effective advocate, a voice in Washington who understands the issues that matter most to our families,” Norcross said in a news release.  

Norcross went on to stress his humble beginnings. He portrayed himself as “a solidly middle class electrician.”  

“We were as middle class as middle class could get — 4 boys, 2 parents, and a dog — in a modest house on a modest street,” he added. “My three brothers, who I’m very proud of, all staked out successful careers in business, academia, and law, but I’m the only one who worked with his hands and rides a Harley.”  

But few New Jersey congressional hopefuls boast political allies like Norcross.  

New Jersey operatives view one of his brothers, Democratic fundraiser George Norcross III, as the most powerful Democrat in the state. New Jersey is also a state where the local political machinery holds enormous sway.  

After Andrews announced his resignation, local Democrats suggested the only way Norcross wouldn’t win the race for that seat is if he didn’t run.  

Republican Gov. Chris Christie has yet to set a special-election date. But in New Jersey, House vacancies are often filled with special primary and general elections concurrent with regularly scheduled elections.  

New Jersey’s Camden-based 1st District is rated Safe Democratic by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.