Carl Lewis

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Carl Lewis
Carl Lewis.jpg
Candidate for
New Jersey Senate District 8
PartyDemocratic
Personal
Place of birthJuly 1, 1961
ProfessionOlympian - Track and Field
Websites
Personal website
Carl Lewis (b. July 1, 1961) is a 2011 Democratic candidate for District 8 of the New Jersey State Senate. Lewis was ordered off the ballot by New Jersey's Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of State Kim Guadagno on April 25, 2011, because of Lewis' residency conflicts. [1] As a result, he is suing the State of New Jersey and Secretary of State Kim Guadagno. [2] Due to the extended nature of his lawsuit, his name was not officially removed from primary ballots mailed to vote-by-mail individuals. On May 5, the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Lewis's name must remain on the ballot until the constitutionality of New Jersey's residency requirements can be determined by a federal judge.[3]

Lewis is a nine-time Olympic gold medalist in Track and Field. He bought a home in New Jersey in 2005 and first registered to vote on April 11, 2011. Although he lived in California for much of his adult life, he attended high school in New Jersey.[4]

Elections

2011

See also: New Jersey State Senate elections, 2011

Lewis is running in the 2011 election for New Jersey Senate District 8. He ran unopposed in the primary on June 7, 2011 and received 2,418 votes. Republican incumbent Dawn Addiego ran unopposed in the Republican primary. The general election takes place on November 8, 2011. Lewis is currently not on the general election ballot due to a residency issue. [5]

Candidacy challenges

As of August 16, Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno ordered that Lewis' name be taken off the general election ballot, citing "a federal appeals court order to keep Lewis on the ballot while a case challenging his candidacy is considered by a judge only applied to the June Democratic primary — which Lewis won uncontested — and not the November general election."[6] A hearing, requested by Lewis' attorney William Tambussi, is scheduled for Friday August 20 to challenge the decision.[6]

On Wednesday April 20, an administrative law judge dismissed attempts by Republicans Bill Layton and Ted Costa to remove Lewis from the June 7 ballot, due to doubts concerning the length of his most recent New Jersey residency. The judge’s order was not binding, which left the decision to Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of State Kim Guadagno (R). As of Tuesday, April 26, Guadagno overturned the judge's ruling and found "credible evidence to conclude" that Lewis did not meet the state's residency requirement, including that he voted and paid income taxes in California as recently as 2009, and did not register to vote in New Jersey until earlier this month, when he filed to run for the Senate. [7]

Republicans believed that Lewis' recent 2008 and 2009 voting history in California nullified his claims of recent New Jersey residency. William Tambussi, Lewis' spokesman, argued that New Jersey's constitutional definition of residency would protect Lewis. [8] Lewis first registered to vote in New Jersey on Monday April 11, the same day he announced his candidacy. [8]

The day after declaring his candidacy, Olympic track champion Carl Lewis was reportedly discouraged from running for the state senate. According to The Auditor, a Lewis staffer claims that Gov. Christie's administration officials had discouraged Lewis from running.[9] Christie spokesman Michael Drewniak firmly denied these claims, stating that Christie did not attempt to dissuade Lewis from running, claiming that "anybody who says otherwise is lying." [9] What Christie did say, according to Drewniak, was that he would support long-time friend, state Sen. Dawn Addiego - Lewis' opponent in the race. [9]

Lawsuit

On Monday May 2, three New Jersey appellate court judges, Philip Carchman, Ronald Graves and Carmen Messano upheld Kim Guadagno's decision to remove Lewis from the ballot. [10] This ruling came after Lewis filed a federal complaint against Guadagno, claiming her initial decision (which found him ineligible) was in error. [7] He also claimed that New Jersey's four-year residency requirement violated the constitution. [11] He is appealing a ruling by a U.S. District judge that upheld New Jersey’s four-year residency requirement as constitutional. The 3rd Circuit of Appeals is handling the appeal. [12] Lewis's court challenge was ultimately successful; he was placed back on the Democratic primary ballot on May 6. In a quickly issued decision, 3rd Circuit ruled that Lewis should be allowed to participate until a more permanent decision regarding his residency status could be made following the primary.

Lieutenant Governor Guadagno once again ordered Lewis off the ballot on August 16, arguing that his "protection" under the 3rd Circuit ruling had expired following the primary. The issue once again came before the courts, where federal judge Noel Hillman ruled on September 7 that Lewis had failed to establish residency and would not be listed on the ballot. Lewis's campaign vowed to appeal.[13]

Campaign themes

In his campaign announcement, Lewis said he hopes to emphasize communities, improving educational opportunities and strengthening physical education for children.[14]

Endorsements

Lewis has been endorsed by:

External links

References