Rothman-Pascrell Race in Redrawn 9th Presents Headache for Democrats

The newly redrawn 9th district is shaping up to become a real dogfight and a worst-case scenario for the Democratic party. When Democratic Congressman Steve Rothman announced that he was moving from Fairlawn to Englewood where he used to be mayor, he set himself up to face fellow Democrat Bill Pascrell in June’s primary. NJToday’s Desiree Taylor spoke with Alfred Doblin, editorial columnist for The Record, about the potential race and what it means for the Democratic Party.


The real winner of the new legislative map, say Doblin, is Republican Congressman Scott Garrett.

According to Doblin, Rothman decided it was not cost-effective to fight Garrett in the 5th district. Even if Rothman could defeat the ultra conservative Garrett in 2012, Doblin adds that the Republican party could find a much more moderate candidate to challenge Rothman in 2014 in the Republican favored district.

A Rothman-Pascrell race pits two candidates who are evenly matched in terms of ideology, campaign resources and strong political alliances, says Doblin. And that’s something the Democratic party wants to avoid, says Doblin, as it commits too many resources in one district.