Home>Highlight>Caliguire, Christine win GOP nod in LD16

Former Somerset County freeholder Mark Caliguire

Caliguire, Christine win GOP nod in LD16

They’ll face Zwicker, Freiman in general

By Nikita Biryukov, June 04 2019 10:56 pm

Somerset County Freeholder Mark Caliguire and former Montgomery Mayor Christine Madrid have won the Republican nomination for State Assembly in the 16th legislative district, beating out their 24-year-old opponent, Forest Locandro.

Caliguire received 4,531 votes, Madrid got 4,012, and Locandro had 3,027 ballots cast in his name.

They’ll face Assemblymen Andrew Zwicker and Roy Freiman in the general election.

The district is one of the few that Republicans can realistically flip this year.

Caliguire and Madrid had the county lines in Somerset, Mercer and Middlesex.

Hunterdon County Republicans chose to back Locandro and Caliguire.

Madrid and the freeholder still won that county.

Caliguire is making his third run for office in as many years.

He lost a State Assembly race in 2017, running 3,673 votes behind Freiman for the seat Jack Ciattarelli (R-Hillsborough) gave up running for governor.  His lost his hometown, Montgomery, where he served as a councilman and mayor, by 438 votes.

Last year, Caliguire lost his bid for re-election to the Somerset County Board of Freeholders.  In that race, he lost the 16th district portion of the county by 407 votes and lost Montgomery by 1,267.

Madrid, who served as director of the Division of Temporary Disability and Family Leave Insurance at the state Department of Labor under Gov. Chris Christie, became mayor last August when Mark Conforti resigned to move to Florida.

She lost her bid for re-election to the township committee three months later by 1,262 votes.

The 16th is one of two in the State that elected a Republican senator and two Democratic assemblymen in 2017.

The district has 14,599 more Democrats than Republicans – up considerably from the 5,275 Democratic edge when the 16th was drawn in 2011.

Zwicker unseated assemblywoman Donna Simon (R-Readington) by just 78 votes in 2015.  He was the first Democratic assemblyman from that district since James Bowers (D-Somerville) lost his bid for a third term to Fred Pope (R-Bridgewater) in 1934.

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