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Former Rep. Michael Pappas.

Pappas wins GOP Senate nod in District 16

By Nikita Biryukov, June 09 2021 12:03 am

Former Rep. Michael Pappas defeated challenger Jeffrey Grant to win the Republican nod for State Senate in the 16th legislative district Tuesday.

Pappas, who made his bid with organizational lines in all four of the district’s counties, served a single term in Congress between 1997 and 1999. He lost his re-election bid against Rep. Rush Holt in 1998.

Grant, an engineer, bracketed with gubernatorial candidate Hirsh Singh, running under the slogan “Make New Jersey Great Again,” a callback to former President Donald Trump.

Pappas’ running mates, Hunterdon Central Regional Board of Education President Vince Panico and Manville Councilman Joseph Lukac, were unopposed in their bids for the Republican Assembly nod.

The former congressman will go on to face Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker (D-South Brunswick), Democrats’ pick for State Sen. Kip Bateman’s (R-Branchburg) seat in the upper chamber.

Bateman is not seeking re-election this year.

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