Pinkin Surfaces, Draws

NEW BRUNSWICK – “Justice has prevailed,” intoned Ralph Johnson moments after his team won a ballot drawing today that only happened because of a judge’s order.

Nancy Pinkin, the Middlesex County Clerk, cancelled last Thursday’s drawing for primary ballot position, a move that prompted both Democrats and Republicans to go to court.

The parties, of course, are different, but the bottom line was the same – both accused Pinkin of not doing her job.

And a state Superior Court judge, Michael Toto, ruled this morning in favor of the plaintiffs. So, a ballot drawing was quickly arranged for 3 p.m. today.

The Democratic case was brought by an insurgent slate calling itself “Democrats for Transparency and Fairness.” It includes three candidates for the town council in Piscataway and two for county commissioner.

The Republican action came from Rik Mehta, a congressional candidate in CD-6 running under the banner, “America First  Republicans.”

Pinkin’s argument, which the judge overruled, was that a ballot drawing was not needed because the two slates were not fielding a complete set of candidates.

Of course, both were also challenging the political status quo.

So when the drawing finally took place, the Middlesex County Republican organization won the number one slot. Party regulars are backing Susan Kiley.

Mehta and his “America First Republicans” will be listed second. Tom Toomey, who did not field a slate, will be third.

The primary winner gets a crack at incumbent Frank Pallone in a district that is very Democratic.

On the Democratic side, the number one ballot position went to the Democrats for Transparency and Fairness slate.

It’s always debatable how much the number one ballot position, or Column A, really means. But it’s always better to be first than last.

“It’s a small victory,” said Johnson, a Piscataway council candidate. “But we’ll take it.”

What is more interesting is that it took a legal challenge to compel an event that should have taken place last week.

(Visited 759 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

News From Around the Web

The Political Landscape