About Us | Contact Us

New Jersey state senator says he’s leaving the Republican Party to join the Democrats.

TRENTON, New Jersey — New Jersey state Sen. Samuel Thompson announced Monday that he is leaving the Republican Party and will run for reelection as a Democrat this year.

Thompson, 87, said over the phone that he decided to leave the Republican Party after party leaders questioned his fitness for office due to his age.

“Betrayal by so many of my friends was too much for me,” he explained. “I am not abandoning my party. My party’s leadership has abandoned me.”

Thompson’s departure would increase the Democrats’ advantage in the 40-member state Senate from 24 to 25 seats.

Although Middlesex County Republican Chairman Rob Bengivenga considered Thompson a friend and mentor and wanted him to be a part of the party’s future, leaders decided to support another candidate for state Senate.

“I was hoping the Senator would embrace it and work with me as a mentor and advisor in the coming years,” he said in an emailed statement.

Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy issued a statement welcoming Thompson to the party and describing him as a tireless public servant.

Thompson, a former Army research scientist, has announced his intention to run for office in this year’s legislative election. He stated that, in contrast to some legislators who work part-time as legislators while also holding other jobs, he works solely as a legislator.

“It’s my whole life. It gives me something to do when I wake up every day to go there and help people. The alternative is to stay at home and die? “I need to be active,” he explained. “I believe I’m performing a public service.”

Thompson, a supporter of former President Donald Trump, praised Trump’s presidency. Thompson paused for a moment when asked how he could fit into the Democratic Party with that viewpoint.

“Everyone has the right to make their own decisions and do what they want,” he said.

Thompson represents parts of Burlington, Middlesex, Monmouth, and Ocean counties in the 12th Legislative District.

This year, all 120 seats in the Assembly and Senate are up for reelection. Thompson’s primary is scheduled for June, when he could face a primary challenger in the Republican Party if he still runs. It is unknown whether Democrats will field a candidate to challenge him in the party’s primary.

Leave a Comment