State Sen. Samuel Thompson (R-Old Bridge) missed the filing deadline to submit petitions to seek the Republican organization line, allowing his opponent in the Republican primary, Old Bridge Mayor Owen Henry, to run opposed at the Monmouth GOP convention.
The 87-year-old Thompson filed a letter of intent, but Monmouth County GOP by-laws require incumbent legislators to file ten signatures of county committee members along with it. Thompson did not do that.
“I only got the information yesterday that I needed to get signatures,” Thompson said. “I think they were a little late getting it out to me.”
After Thompson submitted his letter, Monmouth Republican officials notified him that he needed to include the ten signatures, the New Jersey Globe has confirmed.
In order to challenge an incumbent legislator, Henry needed 25 county committee signatures; he submitted those in advance of yesterday’s filing deadline.
The petition signature requirement to run at the county convention in Monmouth has been around for years. Thompson, a former Middlesex County GOP chairman, has qualified to compete at the Monmouth Republican convention eleven times since becoming a candidate for the State Assembly in 1997.
Two years ago, Monmouth County accounted for 34% of all votes in the 12th legislative district Republican primary. The district, which hardly changed during reapportionment, includes Old Bridge and parts of Ocean and Burlington counties.
“We’ll see what happens,” Thompson said, who has complained about being challenged because of his age.