Environmental activist Christine Clarke will mount her third bid for the New Jersey Legislature, announcing today that she will take on State Sen. Anthony M. Bucco (R-Boonton) in the 25th legislative district.
Clarke lost races for the Assembly in 2019 and Senate in 2021 in the 26th district. Legislative redistricting moved her hometown of Jefferson into the 25th.
“The times we live in call for servant leaders who put the needs of the district before personal ambition,” Clarke said. “We need people in Trenton who do the correct thing because it is correct, and who will be consistent in standing up publicly and behind-the-scenes as necessary to get good work done. Leaders who are more committed to doing the work of the people than being photographed. Leaders whose positions don’t cause harm to their constituents.”
The Jefferson Democratic municipal chair, Clarke is the former environmental director at Action Together New Jersey and a steering committee member of the Jersey Renews coalition.
Bucco, who has served in the legislature since 2010, won a special election for State Senate in 2020 with 54% of the vote – his 67,142 votes set a record for the most total votes for any Senate candidate since the adoption of the 40-district map in 1973. He won 57% in 2021.
In her announcement, Clarke said she had endorsements from Morris County Democratic Chair Amalia Duarte, Passaic County Democratic Chair John Currie, and Democratic State Chairman LeRoy Jones, Jr.
This will be Duarte’s first primary election since she replaced Chip Robinson as county chair earlier this year. It reflects her willingness to back candidates before the county convention to award the organization line.
“She is a fighter and a hard worker who won’t just show up for photo ops but will also show up to serve constituents,” Duarte said of Clarke. “LD25 deserves leadership with a vision for the future, and that’s what Christine brings to this campaign.”
Clarke received 41% of the vote against State Sen. Joseph Pennacchio (R-Montville) in 2021 and trailed Assemblyman Jay Webber by 5,631 votes in 2019.