By David Madden

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — The race to replace Jon Runyan in congress is expected to be the tightest battle on the New Jersey ballot come fall, and the first salvo has been fired by the state Democratic Party against a third party candidate.

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Ed Forchion has run for a number of offices. You probably know him better as the “Weedman” for his advocacy of marijuana reform laws. He submitted 208 signatures on petitions for the Third District race as an independent and 109 were thrown out by an administrative judge leaving him one short of the 100 needed.

The Democrats want him booted on that technicality, but Forchion cites a technicality of his own against the Democrats.

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“They didn’t actually come in and file a challenge. They faxed a challenge to the Department of Elections three minutes after the deadline. Their challenge should not have been heard anyway.”

Forchion’s filed a response, in person, to that effect with the Department of State which, at this point, leaves the question in the hands of Republican Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno.

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