State Sen. Joseph Pennacchio (R-Montville) says he will not be a candidate for Rodney Frelinghuysen’s 11th district House seat.
“After much thoughtful consideration I have decided not to seek the Republican nomination for Congress. My constituents have recently re-elected me to the State Senate. I look forward to addressing and finishing some of the challenges which we have begun to address. Elimination of our the State cap on Property tax deductions, formation of an Innocence Commission, full State funding of Special Education, and the rightful funding of Greenwood Lake by the State are a few of the initiatives that I look forward to accomplishing,” Pennacchio said this morning. “I would like to thank all of those who kept me very busy this past week encouraging me to run.”
Pennacchio, 62, was considered one of the leading candidates for the seat, which Republicans have held for the last 34 years. He is a four-term State Senator representing parts of Morris, Essex and Passaic counties, and previously served as an Assemblyman and Morris County Freeholder. He also ran statewide, as a candidate for the GOP U.S. Senate nomination in 2008, and easily won Morris and Essex counties. He would have an extraordinarily formidable candidate in a Republican primary.
Pennacchio’s exit from the race could allow Assemblyman Jay Webber (R-Morris Plains), who announced on Saturday, an opportunity to secure more endorsements in the 26th legislative district which they share.