Assemblyman Joe Howarth (R-Evesham) will not seek the support of the Burlington County GOP convention this morning but will run off the line in the June 4 Republican primary.
“I will not be attending the pre-determined County Committee meeting tomorrow morning, but will instead use that time to continue to reach out to rank and file Republicans,” Howarth wrote in an e-mail to some Republican leaders.
Howarth was dumped by the Republican organization after they concluded that he mulled switching parties along with State Sen. Dawn Addiego (D-Evesham) in January. The party screening committee has backed sheriff Jean Stanfield to run with incumbent Ryan Peters (R-Hainesport).
“Going into this, we knew that the County Committee fight was one stacked against our campaign with the ultimate say of who would be awarded the ‘line’ by the County Chairman, regardless of how many Municipal Chairs supported us,” Howarth said. “With that understanding, we shifted our focus to bringing our fiscal conservative platform to the 43,000+ Republicans that call LD-8 home.”
All but one of the fifteen Republican municipal chairs from the Burlington County portion of the district have endorsed Peters and Stanfield and signed a letter supporting them.
“The rumor mill against my staff and I have been working overtime, and as a friend once said, as long as they are talking about me, they don’t have time to talk about someone else,” said Howarth. “What’s right isn’t always popular, and what’s popular isn’t always right.”
Democrats have picked Gina LaPlaca and Mark Natale to run on their organization line for Assembly in the 8th district.