TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- Democratic U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone says he's officially in the race to fill the New Jersey U.S. Senate seat occupied by Frank Lautenberg until his death last week.
Pallone planned to hold a news conference Monday to announce his intentions. He spoke exclusively to The Associated Press on Sunday night.
He joins U.S. Rep. Rush Holt and Newark Mayor Cory Booker in the Democratic primary.
Booker was endorsed by influential South Jersey political leader George Norcross III on Sunday night.
Pallone says his record in Congress shows he is the best person to continue Lautenberg's progressive legacy.
Gov. Chris Christie appointed state Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa (kee-AY'-zah) to the seat temporarily and scheduled a special election to complete the term. The primaries are scheduled for Aug. 13 with a general election two months later.
The deadline to enter the race is 4 p.m. Monday.
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