Thornton Mayor Joins 8th Congressional District Race

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Thornton Mayor Jan Kulmann has joined the crowded field vying for the 8th Congressional District seat, just days after former state Sen. Doug Shea and former Pearl River Town Councilwoman Nicole Limongelli also filed paperwork to run for the seat.

Mayor Kulmann announced he was announcing his bid Monday night on Facebook and YouTube, posting a video of himself singing “Take Me Home, Country Roads.” A photo of the former secretary of state began circulating on social media from when Kulmann attended an Election Day morning event for President Obama, where he announced he would be voting for President-elect Donald J. Trump.

“While some may dismiss us as snowbirds, we are the people in the trenches every day and hold office with integrity and honor,” Mayor Kulmann said in a statement. “I will not let my opposition seek to divide us, but to bring us together. I will always be willing to do the hard things that many consider do-able and I will always put the people before the politicians.”

Mayor Kulmann has raised $110,593.07 for his campaign, his latest filing with the Federal Election Commission shows.

Mayor Kulmann said he is the first mayor in the nation to wear a T-shirt and sit at a table in Ferguson to mark his one-year anniversary.

Mayor Kulmann previously served on the Pearl River Town Council from 2003-2005, after representing the East End of Monroe for two terms in the state Legislature. He also served as development officer for the Ocean County Economic Development Corporation. Mayor Kulmann was appointed mayor in 2014 after the death of Tom White.

The contest to succeed Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr. was thrown into turmoil when Gov. Chris Christie, a fellow Democrat, appointed his own candidate, longtime state Sen. Paul Sarlo, to replace Peter Barnes Jr. as the district’s state senator. Since the election was brought forward to Aug. 7, nearly a dozen candidates have filed paperwork with the Federal Election Commission to run for the seat. The job opened up when Mr. Pascrell resigned after he was elected to Congress.

The 8th Congressional District includes the towns of Cape May, Atlantic City, Bridgeton, Cherry Hill, Florham Park, Holmdel, Sea Isle City, Stone Harbor, Millville, Ogdensburg, Asbury Park, Belmar, Short Hills, Port Richmond, Cherry Hill, Westwood, Voorhees, Toms River, Parsippany and Berkeley Heights.

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