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Former New Jersey Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt. (Photo: Steinhardt for Senate).

Steinhardt launches bid for Doherty’s Senate seat

Ex-GOP state chairman is leading candidate to be next senator

By David Wildstein, September 27 2022 10:01 am

Former Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt today kicked off his bid for State Senate in the 23rd legislative district with key endorsements from Hunterdon, Warren and Somerset counties.

The incumbent, State Sen. Michael Doherty (R-Oxford), is running for Warren County Surrogate in the November general election.  Warren is solidly Republican and Doherty is a safe bet to win the post.  That will trigger a special election convention in December or January to replace him until the winners of  the 2023 elections take office in January 2024.

“As Senator, I will fight for New Jersey families, stand up to the Trenton swamp, and make the 23rd legislative district a safe and affordable place to call home,” Steinhardt said.

Steinhardt begins the race as the overwhelming front-runner for the Senate seat.  He starts with endorsements from Doherty and the two assemblymen from his district, Minority Leader John DiMaio (R-Hackettstown) and Assemblyman Erik Peterson (R-Franklin), along with Senate Minority Leader Steve Oroho (R-Franklin), Somerset County GOP Chairman Tim Howes, Bridgewater Mayor Matt Moench, and the Republican county commissioners in Hunterdon and Warren counties.

“Northwest New Jersey is a fortress for conservative, family values,” said Steinhardt. “In Warren, Hunterdon, and Somerset Counties, those values produce strong communities, a stronger economy, and great foundations for education, families and children. But liberal politicians in Washington and Trenton are eroding those values and injecting their woke policies into every corner of life.”

Next year, Steinhardt would need to run a campaign for a four-year term under the new boundaries of a legislative map that was adopted earlier this year.  The special election convention would use the 2011 map.

Steinhardt spent fifteen years as the mayor of Lopatcong and has been the Warren County GOP chairman since 2004.  He briefly sought the Republican nomination for governor in 2021.

On a new campaign website he launched today, steinhardt4senate.com, Steinhardt outlined a strongly conservative, pro-life, pro-gun platform that focuses on “giving parents a voice…supporting police and cracking down on crime…putting American and New Jersey first…(and) a Northwest Jersey check on liberal spending.”

Doherty announced last month that he would run for surrogate.  Democrats have not won a countywide election in Warren County in 23 years.

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