Six things to know about Jay Webber, who announced today that he would seek the Republican nomination for Congress in New Jersey’s 11th district:
1. Webber grew up in Passaic County, played baseball at Johns Hopkins. He was a Rhodes Scholar semi-finalist before going to Harvard Law, where he met his wife.
2. He worked on Rep. Bill Martini’s congressional staff and clerked for state Supreme Court Justice Peter Verniero. He also worked at the Manhattan Institute and at Drinker Biddle.
3. In 2003, Webber, then 31, mounted a primary challenge to State Sen. Bob Martin. That was the race where my old website labeled Martin “Mr. Potato Head” because Martin’s ideological face changed in election years. And it was that campaign that created a feud between Webber and Republican National Committeeman Bill Palatucci, who has never met an overreaction he didn’t like.
4. Webber won a State Assembly seat in 2007 when Martin retired and Joe Pennacchio moved up to the Senate. He beat Larry Casha.
5. After Chris Christie won the 2009 gubernatorial primary, he picked Webber to serve as Republican State Chairman.
6. Webber is the founder of New Jersey Reagan Day, and serves on the Reagan Ranch Board of Governors.