Olympic medalist Carl Lewis to announce run Monday

Carl Lewis would face Republican state Sen. Dawn Addiego for the senate seat, which covers the solidly Republican east side of Burlington County. (Ron Tarver / Staff Photographer)
Carl Lewis would face Republican state Sen. Dawn Addiego for the senate seat, which covers the solidly Republican east side of Burlington County. (Ron Tarver / Staff Photographer) (Frank Kummer)
Posted: April 10, 2011

Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis plans to announce Monday that he will run for state senate in New Jersey.

"All indications are that he will run," said a Democratic source.

Nominating petitions were circulated on Lewis' behalf over the weekend.

If Lewis goes through with his planned 2 p.m. announcement in Mount Holly Monday, Lewis would become Burlington County's third athlete turned politician in recent years.

Legislative candidates have until 4 p.m. to file their petitions.

Lewis would face Republican state Sen. Dawn Addiego for the senate seat which covers the solidly Republican east side of Burlington County.

Last year, former Eagle Jon Runyan, a Republican, won the congressional seat which covers much of Burlington and Ocean counties. But in 2007, former Flyer Brian Propp, ran for an assembly seat as a Republican and lost.

Lewis issued a press release Sunday evening saying that he planned to announce "my political decision" but could not be reached for comment.

Word of Lewis' candidacy circulated late last week but Lewis declined to discuss his plans publicly.

Assemblyman Herb Conaway (D., Burlington) confirmed Friday that Democrats were trying to convince Lewis to run for the state senate.

Burlington County Democrats have fallen into a slump. They now hold only one county-level office and two assembly seats as well as some municipal seats.

A Lewis candidacy is seen by some as a way to help rebuild the county party.

Lewis, 50, was born in Alabama and grew up in Willingboro. He now lives in Medford.

He won nine gold medals and one silver medal in the Olympics spanning 1984 to 1996, in sprinting and long jumping.

Contact staff writer Cynthia Burton at 856-779-3858 or cburton@phillynews.com.

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