Darius Mayfield, a political newcomer who held Rep. Bonne Watson Coleman (D-Ewing) to 60% for the first time in her career in Tuesday’s general election, has announced that he intends to challenge her again in 2024.
A 37-year-old businessman who walked away from his job last year to become a full-time congressional candidate, Mayfield currently trails Watson by a 60%-39% margin.
“This is just the beginning. I’m more motivated than ever,” stated Mayfield. “I’ll reassess and move forward in strength. This is our seat and we showed that it can be.”
Mayfield said he knocked on tens of thousand of doors in New Jersey’s 12th district.
“We proved that ‘Not Black, Not White, But American’ is what New Jerseyans from all backgrounds want,” he said. That was his campaign slogan.
While election results are still in flux in Mercer County, where a software glitch rendered voting machines across the county unusable, Mayfield held Watson Coleman to 54% in the Middlesex County portion of the district.
Mayfield has joined leaders from both parties in demanding an investigation into the Mercer County voting machine debacle.
“Mercer County Republicans and our challengers have been monitoring the count and will challenge and look to legal action where we feel some can be taken,” he said.
Tom Kean, Jr. won a rematch this year against Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes); it was the first in 42 years in races for the U.S. House of Representatives.
In 1978, 25-year-old Christopher Smith won 37% of the vote against Rep. Frank Thompson, Jr. (D-Trenton), the chairman of the House Administration Committee. But in 1980, Smith unseated Thompson with 57% of the vote.
Marge Roukema challenged Rep. Andrew Maguire (D-Ridgewood) in 1978 but lost with 47% of the vote. Two years later, she won with 51%.