NJ Assembly speaker won't seek re-election

September 2, 2009 7:38:01 AM PDT
New Jersey Assembly Speaker Joseph Roberts Jr. will not seek re-election in November, ending a 22-year career in the Legislature. The Camden County Democrat announced his pending retirement to South Jersey lawmakers during a breakfast meeting in Cherry Hill. He's planning to hold a press conference at the Statehouse later Wednesday.

Assemblyman John Burzichelli of Thorofare, who was at the meeting, says Roberts has decided to pull his name from the November ballot, ending months of speculation that he was preparing to step aside.

The Star-Ledger of Newark reported the 57-year-old is expected to be replaced on the ballot by Donald Norcross. Norcross is co-chairman of the Camden County Democratic Committee and brother of South Jersey political boss George Norcross.

Roberts did not return two calls for comment.

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