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Atlantic County Commissioner John Risley. (Photo: Nikita Biryukov for the New Jersey Globe)

Risley announces Assembly campaign in 2nd district

Atlantic County commissioner takes aim at McGettigan’s ballot screwup

By Nikita Biryukov, February 02 2021 4:34 pm

Atlantic County Commissioner John Risley announced he would seek the Republican nod for Assembly in the second legislative district Tuesday.

“I’m running because we need Assembly people who will actually stand up and do something to get our economy reopened,” Risley said. “Instead, the speechless and spineless team of Mazzeo and Armato sit around waiting for their bosses in Camden County to send them cue cards.”

WPG Talk Radio host Harry Hurley was first to report that Risley would run for the seat.

He’ll face Assemblymen Vince Mazzeo (D-Northfield) and John Armato (D-Buena), who represent one of just three districts in the state with split representation.

Former Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian said on Saturday that he would run, and Atlantic City Councilman Jesse Kurtz has been seeking support to run at the March GOP convention.

Risley entered the contest with attacks at other Democrats, hitting Gov. Phil Murphy over executive orders issued to combat the pandemic and Atlantic County Clerk Ed McGettigan over a botched election for the county’s 3rd district commissioner seat.

A judge ordered that race reran because McGettigan’s office sent incorrect ballots to 554 voters. The Democratic assemblymen called for his resignation in January but walked those calls back later the same day.

“Maybe they didn’t know where they stood on this issue because their handlers hadn’t told them yet,” Risley said.

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