Cranbury Republican candidates running unopposed in June 8 primary

Photo courtesy of Robert Bolger
Township Committee Republican candidate Robert Bolger (center) running in 2021 Republican primary to secure a spot on the ballot for the November general election.

With the Republican primary right around the corner, two Republican candidates competing for two seats on the Cranbury Township Committee are running unopposed in a primary race to secure two spots in the November general election.

The two open seats on the Cranbury Township Committee carry three-year terms.

As the June 8 date for the primary approaches, two newcomers enter into the primary, and if they secure the votes the candidates will face two Democratic opponents in November. On the ballot is Robert Bolger, who seeks a first term on the Township Committee. The second newcomer is Cindy Hughes, whose name won’t appear on the ballot, as she will be a write-in candidate.

Bolger lives on North Main Street and was raised in the western suburbs of Philadelphia. He attended the University of Pennsylvania, and would go on to serve in a combat role with the United States Army in Vietnam.

“In 1984, I founded a food service company which operated a multi-unit Domino’s Pizza franchise for over 20 years,” he said. “The business grew quickly from zero to multi-million dollar sales and employed over 100 people.”

In 2005, Bolger sold the stores and moved with his wife Johana to a remote mountain top in Costa Rica.

“We planted commercial crops of coffee and oranges and undertook a reforestation project with the planting of over 40,000 tropical hardwood trees,” Bolger said. “We also built a new house which, upon completion, was blessed with the arrival of my third daughter Annie, now a 15-year old sophomore at the Peddie School.”

They would return to the United States in 2017 after having spent 12 years in Costa Rica. When they returned Annie would be enrolled at the Cranbury School.

“I am now running for a seat on the Cranbury Township Committee, which marks my very first pursuit of elected office. I am running because I believe my experience and perspective can be used to good effect on the Township Committee,” Bolger said. “There is currently only one Republican of five at the table and I believe that a more balanced and broader range of views would produce better results consistent with the community’s vision for its own future.”

He said he sees his role as a steward, who would be charged with the responsible care of what has come before him and will exist long after he is gone.

“A galvanizing issue in this campaign involves the sale of recreational cannabis in the township. While I wholeheartedly support the right of adults to use this legal substance in their own homes, the open retail sale of the product represents a profound move toward the cultural normalization of cannabis use,” he said. “I believe it is self-evident that such normalization would serve to put cannabis that much closer to the hands of my 15-year-old daughter and other minors. For that reason, I unequivocally oppose the cultivation or retail sale of recreational cannabis in Cranbury.”

Additionally, another issue raised by Bolger is the creation of a township committee on diversity and inclusion.

“To me, this represents an unnecessary and intrusive solution in search of a problem. Therefore, I oppose the creation of a diversity and inclusion committee,” Bolger said. “However, I am in favor of the acquisition and preservation of more open land in the township. I also support the creation of a comprehensive plan for the development of our business district. If elected, I pledge to approach my Township Committee duties with humility and civility.”

The current Township Committee is comprised of three Democrats (Mayor Mike Ferrante, Township Committeeman Matt Scott, and Township Committeewoman Barbara Rogers), one Republican (Township Committeewoman Evelyn Spann) and one unaffiliated (Township Committeeman Jay Taylor).

Hughes could not be reached by press time.