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Township Man, GOP Congressional Candidate, Defeats Ballot Challenge

Daryl Kipnis

A township resident who is the presumptive Republican candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from the 12th Congressional District successfully fought off a challenge to have his name removed from the June 5 primary ballot.

Daryl Kipnis was one of two Republican congressional candidates to fight challenges mounted by the New Jersey Democratic State Committee.

Kipnis is looking to challenge U.S. Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman in November’s election.

According to a release from the Kipnis campaign, state Democrats challenged his nominating petitions as well as those of Agha Khan, who is running for Congress from the 10th Legislative District.

According to the release, state Democrats challenged the petitions that were signed by “Chinese-born U.S. citizens who used their American nicknames on the form” and attempted to invalidate one of the petition circulators, Republican Organization President Matthew Cherian, alleging that others assisted in physically passing around petitions at a meeting.

“New Jersey Democrats constantly tell you about the need for ‘expanding the right to vote,’ and of their concerns about ‘voter suppression,’ particularly when it concerns voters hailing from the diverse racial, ethnic, and religious minorities which we all celebrate to have here in New Jersey,” Kipnis said in the release. “What they don’t tell you is that they filed meritless court
challenges to the nominating petitions of two candidates for Congress, one of whom is Jewish (myself), and the other, Dr. Agha Khan, who is a Pakistani-American Muslim who emigrated here legally and became a U.S. Citizen.”

“For all their rhetoric about how they want people to be able to identify however they please, the New Jersey Democratic State Committee actually paid an attorney from a politically connected law firm to argue in front of an Administrative Law Judge that Chinese-born U.S. citizen voters using their American nicknames should be disenfranchised,” Kipnis said. “They failed, and justice prevailed. However, this exercise in futility by the left proves that when they speak of ‘diversity,’ they don’t mean diversity of opinion, beliefs, or philosophy.”

“I would like to congratulate Mr. Kipnis and Mr. Khan on successfully fending off those challenges,” New Jersey State GOP Chairman Doug Steinhardt said in the release. “We look forward to working with them to run strong campaigns. We believe that the best way to increase voter participation is through competitive elections and fair ballot access for good candidates.”

New Jersey State Democratic Committee executive director Liz Gilbert defended the challenges.

“The New Jersey Democratic State Committee believes that candidates should play by the rules,” she said in a statement. “When evidence warrants we have challenged candidates that we believe fell short of eligibility. It’s a simple as that.”

“If Mr. Kipnis thinks a judge’s decision to allow him on the ballot is, itself, a victory, then he still has a lot to learn about what voters expect from elected officials,” Gilbert said.

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