Candidate Data from the Center for American Women and Politics
Women’s representation in the New Jersey legislature is at a precarious position in the 2023 state legislative elections, according to data from the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP), a unit of the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University. While 98 (59D, 39R) women have filed to run for state legislative offices in New Jersey, a record number of women legislators are not seeking re-election in their current districts, with some leaving public office, some seeking other seats in the legislature, and some running for non-legislative offices. This year, 12 women are leaving their current office, three of whom are assemblywomen running for seats in the state Senate and nine of whom are leaving the legislature altogether. Over the past decade, women’s representation in the state legislature has increased by a net gain of just seven seats.
Here is full data on women leaving the New Jersey legislature in 2023:
Twelve (8D, 4R) women are leaving their current legislative seats in 2023.
- These departures represent 28.6% of women’s representation in the legislature.
- This is both the highest raw number of departures (next highest: 7 in 2011) and proportion of total representation (next highest: 21.1% in 2001). Like 2023, both 2001 and 2011 were the first legislative elections following a redistricting.
- Women make up 44.4% of all legislators leaving their current seats in 2023.* They hold 35% of all seats in the current New Jersey Legislature.
- In seven of these cases, women candidates are running to fill these seats with the support of the incumbent party. In three cases, women are only running to fill the seat from the opposite party. In two cases, no woman is running to replace the departing woman legislator.
Three (2D, 1R) are assemblywomen seeking Senate seats.
Nine (6D, 3R) are leaving the legislature altogether.
- These nine departures represent 21.4% of the entirety of women’s current representation in the state legislature.
- This is both the highest raw number of women leaving the legislature altogether (next highest: 6 in 2011) and as a proportion of total representation (next highest: 17.6% in 2011).
- Women make up 45% of all officeholders departing the legislature entirely in 2023.
“With record departures, we are starting the 2023 election at an unprecedented deficit for women’s potential to expand their presence in the state legislature in New Jersey,” said CAWP Director Debbie Walsh. “Looking at these candidate numbers and the recent history for women in the Garden State, there’s a very real possibility that women will lose ground in the 2023 election. This is a sobering moment. While we applaud those instances where party leaders are supporting women’s candidacies for the seats of departing women legislators, political power brokers must do more to recruit women and run them where they can win.”
This year, 98 (59D, 39R) women have filed to run for state legislative offices in New Jersey. This is an increase of just five candidates from the 2021 election, when 93 (59D, 34R) women ran for seats in the legislature. Women gained five seats in the legislature following the 2021 election. Here is full CAWP candidate data for women in New Jersey’s 2023 legislative elections:
Learn more about women’s representation in the state at our New Jersey Facts page.
*Throughout this release, the total numbers of departing legislators, including men, as well as party support status are from New Jersey Globe.
Daniel De Simone: firstname.lastname@example.org; 760.703.0948