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Rush D. Holt represented New Jersey in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1999 until his retirement in 2015 (FACEBOOK PHOTO)

New Jerseys 20 Living ex-Congressmen

By David Wildstein, October 15 2018 9:15 am

Rush Holt
is 70 today, the 11th oldest of the nineteen living former Congressmen from New Jersey.

The oldest is Cornelius Gallagher, who celebrated his 97th birthday last March.  The Bayonne Democrat was first elected to Congress in 1958, making him the only living New Jerseyan to have served in the House while Dwight Eisenhower was still president.  Gallagher lost his bid for an eighth term in the 1972 primary.

The rest: Frank Guarini (94); Herb Klein (88); Bill Hughes (85); Jim Florio (81); Harold Hollenbeck (79); Andrew Maguire (79); Jim Courter (78), Jim Saxton (75); Dick Zimmer (74); Bill Martini (71); Bob Torricelli (67); Steve Rothman (65); Bob Menendez (64); Rob Andrews (61); Scott Garrett (59); Michael Pappas (56); Mike Ferguson (48) and Jon Runyan (44).

Courter and Rothman celebrated their birthdays yesterday, according to POLITICO New Jersey Playbook.

At least two more will join this list in January when Frank LoBiondo and Rodney Frelinghuysen, both 72, retire after 24 years in the House each.

Florio and Hughes, who ousted Republican incumbents in the 1974 Watergate landslide, are the only two from the Gerald Ford era, although Hollenbeck was sworn in a couple of weeks before Jimmy Carter was inaugurated in 1977.

Gallagher is the third oldest living Member of Congress, behind Lester Wolf (D-New York), who turns 100 on January 4, and Neal Smith (D-Iowa), who is 98.  Guarini ranks 19th.

Correction: An earlier version of this story left out former Rep. Andrew Maguire, who served from 1975 to 1981.

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