Gov. Phil Murphy will nominate former State Sen. Dawn Addiego (D-Evesham) to serve as the Burlington County Superintendent of Elections today, the New Jersey Globe has learned.
Addiego left office at noon today after losing her bid for re-election last November to Republican Jean Stanfield, ending her fourteen year stint in the New Jersey Legislature.
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She will replace George Kotch in the full-time, $94,320-per-year post.
Addiego’s nomination requires Senate confirmation, but as a former senator she is not subject to senatorial courtesy and Stanfield cannot block her.
Five days ago, Addiego hinted that she wanted to remain in public office.
“One never knows what the future holds,” she told the New Jersey Globe. “I’m certainly open to any opportunity that may present itself.”
Addiego switched parties in January 2019 after spending more than 25 years as a Republican elected official. She was an Evesham councilwoman and three-term Burlington County freeholder before winning a State Assembly seat in 2007 after Republicans decided to replace incumbents Francis Bodine and Larry Chatzidakis on the legislative ticket. Bodine switched parties and ran unsuccessfully for the State Senate.
After State Sen. Phil Haines (R-Springfield) resigned in late 2010 to become a Superior Court Judge, Addiego moved up to the Senate.
Concerned about the increasing blueness of Burlington County – she was re-elected in 2017 with 52% of the vote and Democrats captured control of the freeholder board in 2018 — and the effect of President Donald Trump, Addiego viewed her best shot at winning re-election to be as an Democrat allied with Senate President Steve Sweeney.
Stanfield, a freshman assemblywoman who spent 18 years as the Burlington County Sheriff, unseated Addiego by 1,721 votes, 51%-49%, in the November 2 general election.
Republicans accused Addiego of taking a “final swing from taxpayer” trough.
“We always knew Dawn Addiego’s party switch had nothing to do with her values and everything to do with personal gain,” said Burlington County Republican Committee Chairman Sean Earlen. “The voters saw through her blatant self-serving move and now she’s cashing in her 30 pieces of silver.”
Stanfield criticized her former opponent — and onetime running mate — of being “rewarded with a patronage job of running our future elections.”
“If Burlington County Democrats continue to hand out jobs to their politically-connected friends, then they will go down the same losing path as Addiego,” the new Republican senator said. “Voters have had enough of this.”
Kotch is a former Burlington County Surrogate who was elected as a Democrat in 2006 and then switched parties to win re-election as a Republican in 2011.
This story was updated at 3:21 PM with comment from Stanfield and Earlen.