Former mayor Jeffery Jones has been booted out of the 9th District congressional race after the Passaic County Democratic Party challenged 79 of his petitions.
Administrative law judge Ellen Bass on Monday found 40 of Jones’ petitions were invalid leaving him below the required 200 signatures to run for office.
Jones submitted 239 signatures for his candidacy, but after the party reviewed the signatures, it found many of the petitions were signed by ineligible and out of district voters.
“With great disappointment, I have formally withdrawn from the 9th Congressional district primary. Remaining encouraged that democracy is a worthy cause,” said Jones in a statement dropping his June primary challenge against incumbent Rep. Bill Pascrell.
Jones signed an agreement before the judge ending his candidacy.
Bass heard the first 40 challenges at a court hearing in Newark. With 40 signatures out of the play, the former mayor fell below the needed petitions to run for office.
Jones’ campaign manager Emanuel Capers said some of those who signed the former mayor’s petitions were not registered voters.
“We will continue to ensure the integrity of the petition process and election law. Primary election candidates must meet requirements for ballot qualification; if they don’t meet those requirements, then they don’t deserve to be on the ballot,” said John Currie, chairman of the Passaic County Democratic Party.
“Good luck to Congressman Pascrell and the Democratic Party in the upcoming election,” said Jones.