Just a few hours after Rep. Rob Andrews (D-NJ) announced his his plan to retire amidst a congressional ethics inquiry, state Sen. Donald Norcross (D), the brother of arguably the most powerful Democratic Party boss in the state, threw his hat in the ring as a likely successor.
“I am running for Congress because South Jersey needs someone who is going to stand up for us in Washington, D.C., as Rob Andrews has done for more than two decades,” Norcross said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.
The Democratic state senator is the brother of one of New Jersey’s major party bosses, George Norcross, who Philadelphia magazine described as having “enormous political power.” The magazine noted that Norcross was able to escape a criminal investigation in the early 2000s.
Lawmakers are already coalescing around Norcross.
“It is important that we have a congressman who will continue to fight for South Jersey in Washington, and that’s why I am enthusiastically announcing my support for Donald Norcross for Congress,” state Sen. Stephen Sweeney (D) said, according to the Burlington County Times.
Andrews has said he would support Norcross as his successor.
“He and I did talk about this,” he said of Norcross, who is an old friend, according to The New York Times.
Below is a list of lawmakers who are previously indicated they would be supportive of a Norcross bid, via NJ Politicker:
Gloucester Township Mayor David Mayer
Senate President Steve Sweeney
Assemblyman Lou Greenwald
Former Assembly Speaker Joe Roberts
Rep. Rob Andrews
Camden County Freeholder Jeff Nash
Camden Mayor Dana Redd
Cherry Hill Mayor Chuck Cahn
Former Cherry Hill Mayor Bernie Platt
Vice President of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Frank Spencer
Assemblyman Troy Singleton
Former Assemblywoman Nilsa Cruz-Perez
Washington Township Mayor Barbara Wallace
Burlington County Democratic Chairman Joe Andl
Palmyra Mayor Karen Sheffler
President of the New Jersey State AFL-CIO Charles Wowkanech
This post was updated.