Former Trenton mayoral candidate Paul Perez has endorsed Republican Justin Tibbetts for State Assembly in the 15th district.
Tibbetts is challenging Assemblyman Anthony Verrelli (D-Hopewell) in a special election to fill the unexpired term of Reed Gusciora, who defeated Perez in the June runoff election for mayor. The winner will complete the remaining fourteen months of Gusciora’s term.
The 15th has 44,430 more Democrats than Republicans. The GOP has not won an Assembly seat in the district since John Hartmann unseated Assemblyman Gerald Naples in 1991.
“Justin Tibbetts is somebody we actually know and is trustworthy. We need to stop voting blindly red or blue. Justin understands what we are going through with the issues of high taxes, crime, and lack of jobs. That is why I endorse Justin Tibbetts for State Assembly” said Paul Perez.
Perez lost a mayoral runoff in 2014 to Eric Jackson.
A former vice President of AFSCME Local 2473 for the Mercer County Community College Building Trades and College Safety Officers Union, the 35-year-old Tibbetts is making his first bid for public office.
Verrelli, the president of Carpenters Local 254, left his seat on the Mercer County Board of Freeholders to join the Legislature in July.
The 15th district has a separate special election for the Assembly seat Elizabeth Muoio gave up after becoming Gov. Phil Murphy’s State Treasurer. Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, who won the seat in February, faces Republican Tracy Sinatra for the remaining fourteen months of Muoio’s term.