Following the release of the state’s new congressional map this morning, Republican Fredon Mayor John Flora announced that he would abandon his campaign for Congress in the 5th district and instead run in the 7th district, where Fredon is now located.
“The new 7th district is much more suited to me geographically and philosophically,” Flora said in a statement. “But overall, my reason for running for Congress has not changed. Whether it is Rep. [Tom] Malinowski or Rep. Josh Gottheimer, doesn’t matter. They both represent the same problems posed by the progressive socialists that are running the Democratic Party.”
Redistricting saw Malinowski’s 7th district change considerably, taking in a number of Sussex County towns like Fredon while shedding suburban territory in the east to make it more favorable to Republicans. The 5th district, meanwhile, grew significantly more Democratic in return.
But Flora was not one of the frontrunners for the Republican nomination in the 5th district, and he likely won’t be in the 7th district either. He, John Isemann, and Rik Mehta all face a daunting primary against Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean Jr. (R-Westfield), who nearly defeated Malinowski in 2020 and is back for a rematch.