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Morris County Freeholder Tom Mastrangelo. (Photo: Facebook.)

Mastrangelo enters race for State Assembly in the 26th

Longtime commissioner becomes fourth candidate for two seats in primary where incumbents not on every line

By David Wildstein, April 05 2021 7:25 pm

Morris County Commissioner Tom Mastrangelo has entered the already tumultuous race for the Republican State Assembly nomination in the 26th district.

Mastrangelo told the New Jersey Globe that he decided to run after incumbent BettyLou DeCroce (R-Parsippany) lost the Morris County Republican Convention to Christian Barranco, an IBEW Local 92 union official.

Barranco is now running on the Morris organization line with Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-Morris Plains).

Mastrangelo said he is open to running with DeCroce in Morris County, which makes up 78% of the district.

“It makes good sense that BettyLou and I run together,” Mastrangelo said. “I’m an 11-year commissioner.  I have a good record.  I’m from the second largest town in the district.  And I know how to run a good campaign – we helped run her campaign 2017.”

But DeCroce said that’s not in the cards.

“I’m not running with him.  I’m running on my own,” DeCroce said.  “I’m a well-known, hardworking legislator and I feel like I’m under attack as the sole woman running.”

DeCroce and Barranco have the organization line in Passaic County, while only DeCroce was given the line in Essex.

State Sen. Joseph Pennacchio (R-Montville) is unopposed for re-election.

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