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Photo of Republican congressional candidate Brian Fitzherbert

Fitzherbert will appeal ballot removal

By Nikita Biryukov, April 10 2018 10:29 am

Congressional candidate Brian Fitzherbert will appeal a judge’s ruling that removed 26 signatures from his nominating petition and knocked him below the 200-signature threshold needed to run for the second congressional district’s House seat.

The review, spurred by a challenge contesting 41 of the 219 signatures on Fitzherbert’s nominating petitions, would remove the 28-year-old defense contractor from the ballot for June’s primary.

“My supporters across the 2nd District deserve to have the opportunity to vote for me on June 5, 2018,” Fitzherbert said in a press release Tuesday.

In the challenge, which The Globe obtained on Monday through an Open Public Records Act request, filer Christopher Coleman, a Galloway Republican, said he reviewed the petitions of candidates Sam Fiocchi, Seth Grossman and Robert Turkavage, all of whom are also seeking the republican nomination to fill the seat left vacant by Rep. Frank LoBiondo’s retirement.

But, Fitzherbert’s petitions were the only ones challenged.

Republican frontrunner Hirsh Singh, who previously ran unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2017, was the only Republican candidate whose petitions went unchallenged. Fitzherbert says that’s not a coincidence.

Fitzherbert said Michael Byrne, a political consultant managing Singh’s campaign, was present for yesterday’s court proceedings.

“Hirsh Singh is a 33-year-old boy that lives at home with his parents, but wants to be a Congressman representing South Jersey,” Fitzherbert said. “He’s a professional politician that has run for Governor, Senate, and Congress, all in the last twelve months.”

The infighting is sure to provide a boost to whoever wins the race for the Democratic nomination, currently led by frontrunner State Sen. Jeff Van Drew, who faces primary challenges from retired teacher Tanzie Youngblood, William Cunningham, a former aide to U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, and farmer and former Pennsylvania congressional candidate Nathan Kleinman.

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