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State Sen. Linda Greenstein at Gov. Phil Murphy's fiscal year 2023 budget address. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for the New Jersey Globe).

Greenstein still staying neutral in 14th district contest between McCoy, Carabelli

McCoy looking like probable Democratic nominee after Middlesex convention win

By Joey Fox, March 09 2023 2:29 pm

With both of her legislative district’s Democratic county conventions now completed, 14th district State Sen. Linda Greenstein (D-Plainsboro) said today that she’s still remaining neutral in the Assembly primary battle between Tennille McCoy and Rick Carabelli, though she affirmed her support for incumbent Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo (D-Hamilton).

“Wayne has been my choice throughout,” Greenstein said. “Right at this moment, I think Tennille will be the candidate, but I have no idea what Rick is planning to do. So I’m still going to maintain, for at least a little while, that I’m not taking a position for one or the other.”

Greenstein’s reluctance to take a clearer stance on the race – which will determine who will join her ticket in the 14th district – is understandable, given the race’s many twists and turns over the last few days.

At the Mercer County Democratic convention on Sunday, McCoy and Carabelli were presumed to be competing against one another for the organizational line to succeed Assemblyman Dan Benson (D-Hamilton), who is running for Mercer County Executive. Instead, however, county committeemembers gave the line to both McCoy and Carabelli while dumping DeAngelo, though DeAngelo did well enough to retain a favorable position on the Mercer primary ballot.

After the Mercer convention, DeAngelo immediately began efforts to shore up his support in Middlesex County, and it worked. He finished a clear first at last night’s Middlesex Democratic convention, with McCoy narrowly beating out Carabelli for the other spot on the line.

Officially, that means Greenstein would run on a slate with McCoy and Carabelli in the Mercer County portion of the 14th district, and with McCoy and DeAngelo in Middlesex. But few expect that untenable balancing act to continue, and the more likely scenario is that Carabelli withdraws from the race, allowing Greenstein’s ticket to start campaigning to win a potentially competitive general election.

“Assuming that Tennille is the candidate, I will be 100% behind her,” Greenstein said. “I have no idea what Rick is planning to do. There’s some aspect of this that has to be determined, and I’m not the one to determine it.”

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