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State Sen. Dawn Addiego (D-Evesham), right, with former Burlington County Freeholder Kate Gibbs.

How Addiego got to the Senate

Won Assembly seat when Burlington GOP dumped Bodine & Chatzidakis

By David Wildstein, January 28 2019 4:21 pm

Republican-turned-Democrat Dawn Addiego first won a State Assembly seat in 2007 after Burlington County Republicans told incumbent assemblymen Francis Bodine (R-Moorestown) and Larry Chatzidakis (R-Mount Laurel) to retire.  They were replaced by Addiego and Scott Rudder (R-Medford).

Bodine switched parties and ran for the State Senate as a Democrat.  He won 39% of the vote in his race against Republican Philip Haines (R-Springfield), the Burlington county clerk.  The GOP had also retired 79-year-old State Sen. Martha Bark (R-Medford).

Addiego was the top vote-getter, outpolling Rudder by 12 votes and Democrat Tracy Riley by 4,770.  She ran 6,076 votes ahead of Democrat Chris Fifis.  She won a second term by 15,732 votes over Democrat Debbie Sarcone.

When Haines resigned from the Senate in November 2010 to become a Superior Court Judge, Addiego was unopposed at a special election convention for the open Senate seat.

Democrats did not run anyone against her in 2011.  She was re-elected in 2013 with 64% against Democrat Javier Vasquez, and with 52% against Democrat George Youngkin in 2017.

Addiego won her first campaign in a May 1993 non-partisan race for Evesham in a campaign that Jeffrey Michaels, a former chief of staff to Gov. Donald DiFrancesco helped run.  She won that race by 330 votes, 1,531 to 1,201 against John Jenks.

Two years later, Addiego suffered the only defeat in her political career when she lost a bid to unseat Evesham mayor Gus Tamburro by 160 votes, 37%-33%, in a three-candidate race.

She was re-elected to the council in 1997 by a wide margin.

In 1999, Addiego was elected to the Burlington County Board of Freeholders.  She succeeded Haines, who was elected county clerk that year. She was reelected by more than 18,000 votes in 2002, and by a wide margin again in 2005.

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