Stanfield’s retirement could complicate NJGOP’s 2023 Senate math

Stanfield

Republicans hoping to flip the State Senate in 2023 arguably faced a setback on Wednesday with the announcement that State Senator Jean Stanfield (R-8) isn’t seeking reelection.

A popular ex-Burlington County sheriff who put off retirement to reclaim the seat for the GOP after Dawn Adding switched parties, LD8 – which is dominated by increasingly woke Philadelphia suburbs –  once again becomes a major battleground for the upcoming legislative elections. 

“Serving the public is not a job that should be taken lightly. It requires commitment and willingness to help every resident who needs it. Unfortunately, between recent health events and wanting to spend more time with my amazing family, I don’t feel as if I can dedicate the energy and time needed for another four years of service,” Stanfield explained in a statement.

Stanfield’s departure from the race probably moves the seat from a slight lean in the GOP direction to a genuine toss-up at a time when Republicans need to defend LD2 and, possibly, LD3 on their list of 2021 gains. Republicans are also hoping to go on offense in LD11 and a handful of other districts as they navigate the close-run mathematics required to make Steven Oroho the Senate President. There are presently 24 Democrats and 16 Republicans (including Stanfield) in the upper chamber of the State House; that means Republicans need five pick ups for a majority assuming, of course, they don’t drop any seats.

The retiring Stanfield’s victory margin in ’21: 1,682 votes.

The GOP list includes Stanfield’s incumbent Assembly running mates: Brandon Umba of Medford and Michael Torrissi, Jr. of Hamilton.

“I would be honored to screen for the position but right now I want to focus on honoring Jean Stanfield’s service to our district,” said Umba upon being reached by Save Jersey for comment. “She has been both a mentor and a friend to me and right now I feel it’s only appropriate to recognize and honor her career as a public servant.”

Other potential Republican candidates include ex-Assemblyman Ryan Peters of Hainesport, Burlington County GOP Chairman Sean Earlen, and former Burlington County Freeholder Latham Tiver.

Matt Rooney
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MATT ROONEY is SaveJersey.com's founder and editor-in-chief, a practicing New Jersey attorney, and the host of 'The Matt Rooney Show' on 1210 WPHT every Sunday evening from 7-10PM EST.