Democrats in the 12th legislative district are trying to assembly a telephone convention for noon Thursday in a bid to nominate a candidate for State Assembly in advance of tomorrow’s 4 PM deadline.
Paul Sarti, a pensions benefits specialist with the state Treasury Department, has agreed to take on Assemblyman-elect Alex Sauickie (R-Jackson) in the November special election to fill the unexpired term of Ronald Dancer (R-Plumsted). Dancer died in July.
He got into the race a few hours ago after the expected candidate, 21-year-old Rutgers University junior Kemani Scott, decided not to run.
The challenge for the 12th district municipalities in Burlington, Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean counties is to get a quorum of county committee members on the phone on short notice.
Sarti faced off against Sauickie four years ago in a non-partisan race for Jackson Township Council but polled fourth in a field of six candidates for two seats. He finished 4,363 votes behind Sauickie.
A member of CWA Local 1033, Sarti is a former Jackson soccer coach and is a Jackson Memorial High School band parent.
Sauickie is scheduled to be sworn in to the Assembly seat at noon tomorrow after winning an August special election convention.
Scott said that he dropped out of the race at the suggestion of Rutgers.
“My academic advisors saw the article and called a meeting with me and recommended against it because of my academic courseload,” Scott said. “Securing a degree is priority number one. There’s always elections in the future.”