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Springfield Republicans Contest Election

GOP members file court documents looking in hopes of overturning election.

Alleging issues with absentee ballots, electronic voting and former residents voting illegally, Springfield Republicans have filed an official contest of election with Superior Court.

James Foerst, the attorney representing the party, said that legal documents questioning the results of the election were filed this week. Following a recount earlier this month, the margin between Democrat Margaret Bandrowski and Republican Jerry Fernandez was reduced from five to four. After reviewing ballots and other election materials, Foerst and his clients believe that there are enough votes in doubt to change the final results.

Most of the alleged voting irregularities stem from the extraordinary circumstances caused by Tropical Storm Sandy. Foerst said that three mail-in ballots were not counted and that residents who attempted to vote electronically were not able to do so due to the technical problems with the county clerk’s office.

“Despite their attempts to vote electronically, they were disenfranchised because the county could not accept their vote,” Foerst said.

In addition, he said his clients have found over a half dozen votes cast by former residents ineligible to vote because they moved away from Springfield.

“They are not legal votes,” he said.

Foerst said that that Superior Court Judge Lisa F. Chrystal, the judge in charge of elections, is expected to review the documents calling for a contested election on Monday, Dec. 31. Foerst said he is arguing that Judge Chrystal should order Springfield to refrain from swearing in Township Committee members and to instead hold a second election.

Bandrowski is set to take the oath of office at Springfield’s annual reorganization meeting on Jan. 1. She said that while she understood why the Republicans are pursuing these legal actions, she was confident she had won the vote.

“They are doing what they feel they have to do and they have the right to exhaust all their legal options,” she said. “However, since the election results have been twice certified, we expect to be sworn in on Tuesday and to serve.”

Former Springfield Township Attorney and Freeholder elect Bruce Bergen said that while he recognized the Republicans are entitled to request court intervention, he questioned whether pursuing legal recourse was in the best interest of Springfield.

"There may have been a close race for one seat, but clearly the voters of Springfield have spoken with a loud voice in rejecting the prior administration," Bergen said in an email.  "At some point, in any race, you need to just accept the results and move on.  I would suggest now is that time in this contest."

Louis Herkalo January 04, 2013 at 11:33 PM
Another idiotic reply by simply an idiot!
Louis Herkalo January 04, 2013 at 11:39 PM
I hope someone who reads your disgusting post that had a family member killed by a drunk driver, hunts you down & gives you a beating so bad, that you are disfigured for the rest of your life!!
Louis Herkalo January 04, 2013 at 11:40 PM
Thanks for the comment Ziad!
Michael S. Dzikowski January 07, 2013 at 04:26 PM
http://www.sec.gov/news/press/2012/2012-270.htm http://www.nj.com/union/index.ssf/2012/12/newly_elected_springfield_comm.html http://www.elec.state.nj.us/aboutelec.htm Mr. Barnett, "The essence of Democracy is an informed electorate. It is the fulfillment of this goal which the New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission (ELEC) embraces as its valued mission". We are now informed of your background and deeply disappointed. Please resign. SEC Complaint 12/17/2012... According to the complaint alleging fraud, falsification of records, scam transactions, backdating of contracts, etc. for personal gain, David Barnett did not admit or deny guilt, but did agree to pay a $130,000 fine and, agreed to not serve as an officer or director of a public COMPANY for 10 years!!! But,,, he's still a SPRINGFIELD, NJ COMMITTEEMAN with responsibilities for NJ "Public Funds"!!...Disgraceful! M.S.Dzikowski
Michael S. Dzikowski January 09, 2013 at 02:55 PM
People of Springfield: You may find this David Barnet alleged fraud story in need of follow-up! I tried to reach Jim Cramer (CNBC stock commentator and major stockholder of “TheStreet, Inc.” “TST”) for input on Barnett's scam but he has not yet responded. Mr. Barnett was again just elected to the Springfield, NJ Township Committee . A controversy of his financial duties with Springfield's "public funds" has begun due to his SEC Settlement never being disclosed to Springfield voters prior to the election. Mr. Barnett had acknowledged his awareness of the SEC investigation since 2008 but he considers the matter irrelevant. The voters are very disturbed that Mr. Barnett, after paying a $130,000 penalty, and accepting a 10 year ban on being an officer or director of any public company (apparently not a public municipality!) has not resigned and, his new Democratic controlled Committee (3 of 5) has yet to publicly discuss or rationalize Mr. Barnett’s continued duties on Springfield’s Finance committee. Thank you for your interest in this important matter.... Michael S. Dzikowski

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