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Democrat Endorses Republican Opponent In Assembly Race

July 30, 1985

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) _ Assemblyman Richard Zimmer is sitting pretty in the three-way race for one of two seats in the legislature. He’s been endorsed by the other Republican candidate and, unhappily, by the lone Democrat.

″He’s not doing that for my benefit,″ Zimmer, a two-term lawmaker, said Monday of the unwanted support from Democrat Richard Allen.

″I don’t have any objection to people endorsing me,″ he said. ″But I wish the ads would say he supports me but I don’t support him.″

Zimmer, Allen and eight-term Republican Karl Weidel are vying for two seats from the 23rd District, which includes parts of five northern counties.

Because two Assembly members are elected from each district, a Republican is guaranteed to capture one seat in November, and Allen has decided to back the one he’d rather work with, said his campaign treasurer, Richard Lewis.

″We are not averse to Richard Zimmer’s policies but we absolutely disagree with Weidel,″ said Lewis. The campaign has taken newspaper ads and radio spots asking voters to elect Allen, a councilman in High Bridge, and re-elect Zimmer.

The ads don’t say Zimmer supports Allen, but Zimmer said, ″The presence of the two names together raises the inference we support each other. The best rebuttal will begin when Karl (Weidel) and I begin our joint campaign.″

Weidel said he isn’t ″concerned one iota″ by the ads.

Zimmer said the situation ″reminds me of the Mark Twain story of two guys who were tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail. One guy says to the other, ’If it weren’t for the honor of the whole thing, I’d rather walk.‴

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