NEW JERSEY (PIX11) — New Jersey voters are casting their ballots in 21 primaries for the state legislature Tuesday.
The polls are open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday, June 6, although it’s not the only day ballots will be cast. In-person voting was held over the weekend and mail-in ballots have been available to voters who prefer them for weeks.
New Jersey’s primary elections are restricted to voters affiliated with either the Democratic or Republican parties. However, unaffiliated voters who want to vote in the primary election can declare a party affiliation at their polling location on June 6.
Here’s what to know for voting in the New Jersey primary election:
Find your polling location
Check your registration
Check your voter registration record here. The voter registration deadline for the primary election was May 16.
Voting by mail
For voters who requested a mail-in ballot, it must be postmarked by 8 p.m. June 6 and received by June 12. Voters can place their mail-in ballot at one of their county’s secure ballot drop boxes by 8 p.m. June 6. Drop box locations can be found at VOTE.NJ.GOV.
Voters can also deliver their mail-in ballot in person to the the county Board of Elections by 8 p.m. June 6. Mail-in ballots cannot be returned to polling places.
A Republican state senator in New Jersey is fighting to hold on to the nomination after his surprise victory in 2021 ousted the Senate president. On the other side of the aisle, two long-time Democratic state senators are vying against each other for another chance to represent their party in the state Legislature.
New Jersey has no statewide races on the ballot this year. However, both chambers of the Democrat-led Legislature are up for grabs in the November election.
Democrats have a 46-34 advantage in the Assembly and a 25-15 margin in the Senate, but control won’t be decided until November. This year’s primary stands out because there’s only a handful of contested races.
In southern New Jersey, incumbent Republican Sen. Ed Durr is facing a challenge from incumbent GOP Assemblywoman Beth Sawyer in the 3rd Legislative District.
Durr had worked as a furniture delivery truck driver when he shocked the state by defeating Steve Sweeney, the Senate president.
At the time Sawyer, a real estate broker, was his running mate. In New Jersey, candidates from the same party typically run on a joint ticket in their district, even if they’re seeking different seats. As a team they swept the Democrats who held the Senate seat and two Assembly seats, helping the GOP net seven seats.
In northern New Jersey, a Democratic contest in the 27th Legislative District has captured some attention, with Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy weighing in.
Incumbent senators Dick Codey and Nia Gill are competing to lengthen their already decadeslong political careers.
Gill has been in the Senate since 2002. She was a long-shot candidate for Senate president after Sweeney was ousted, but lost to Sen. Nicholas Scutari, a fellow Democrat.
Codey, who served as governor from November 2004 until January 2006, has been in the state Senate since 1982. Their primary contest comes after redistricting left Gill’s hometown inside the district currently held by Codey.
Endorsing Codey, Murphy called him a “hardworking and dedicated” public servant.” Murphy didn’t mention Gill although the two have agreed on legislation previously, including bills to tighten the state’s gun laws.