TRENTON – After decades in politics, Sen. Christopher Connors announced he won’t seek re-election in the fall.
“It has been the greatest honor of my professional life to serve the people of the 9th Legislative District. I have always held a strong commitment to serving the community and have always thought of my constituents as my extended family,” he said. “However, after thoughtful consideration, I have decided not to seek re-election to the State Legislature after 33 years of service. This was certainly a difficult decision, but I feel in my heart that this is the right time to step aside, especially as running for re-election would require serving a four-year term.”
The Lacey Republican had a long career in politics. He was first elected to the Lacey Township Committee in 1984, serving as mayor from 1986-1990. He joined the Assembly in the 9th District in 1989 and won elections ever since. He was Assistant Majority Leader from 1992-1995.
Every state district has a senator and two assembly members. His father was the senator in that district. When Leonard Connors retired in 2007, Christopher then stepped up into his father’s role. He’s won re-election ever since.
“I can take comfort in fulfilling my final year in the Senate knowing that I served my constituents to the best of my ability, always placing their best interests and good governance before partisan politics or special interest agendas. Always, my first and most important responsibility is to be responsive to my constituents, especially through the constituent services provided by my legislative district office to assist those in need,” he said.
“Making this decision even more difficult is how much I will sincerely miss the tremendously productive working relationships with the dedicated federal, state, county, and local elected officials whom I share a constituency. Most especially though, I will miss serving along my 9th District Legislative colleagues Assemblyman Brian Rumpf and Assemblywoman DiAnne Gove who are dedicated, compassionate, and highly effective public servants who have earned the enduring respect of both their constituents and fellow elected officials,” he said.
“Lastly, I want to pay tribute to my late father, Senator Leonard T. Connors, Jr., for consistently instilling in me the qualities of a dedicated public servant, that begins with being responsive to and respectful of the people you were elected to represent. He always followed his moral compass and was the greatest father and mentor a person could ever have by their side.”
Connors is a partner with the law firm of Dasti, Murphy, McGuckin, Ulaky, Koutsouris & Connors who also serves as the township attorney of Lacey. From 1982 to 1988, Connors was Deputy Director of the New Jersey Commission on Capital Budgeting and Planning and served as its Director during 1988 and 1989.
Connors served as Assistant Majority Leader 1992-95. Presently, Connors serves as a ranking member of the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee and the Senate Military and Veterans Affairs Committee.
His retirement leaves a power vacuum that local Republicans will likely vie for.
The 9th District is made up of the following areas: Barnegat, Barnegat Light, Bass River, Beach Haven, Beachwood, Berkeley, Eagleswood, Galloway, Harvey Cedars, Lacey, Little Egg Harbor, Long Beach, Ocean Gate, Ocean Township (Waretown), Pine Beach, Port Republic, Seaside Park, Ship Bottom, South Toms River, Stafford, Surf City, Tabernacle, Tuckerton, Washington (Burlington).