SNL alumnus Joe Piscopo will not enter NJ governor race, endorses Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno

Posted: Updated:
Joe Piscopo has endorsed Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno for governor. Joe Piscopo has endorsed Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno for governor.
PARAMUS -

“Saturday Night Live” alumnus Joe Piscopo will not enter the New Jersey governor race despite rumors that he would run as an Independent.

The comedian made the official announcement Wednesday morning during a live broadcast of his radio show, “The Joe Piscopo Show,” at the Salem Business Breakfast at Bergen Community College in Paramus.

Piscopo instead gave his support to Republican candidate Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, announcing his endorsement as Guadagno appeared on stage with him at the breakfast.

Piscopo had been rumored to be considering entering the race as an Independent ever since he ruled out running as a Republican in March.

“We had the fundraisers, the campaign managers. As an Independent, do I rip it up? Or do I do what’s right for the state of New Jersey,” Piscopo said.

Guadagno’s closest Republican contender is Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli. He says that a new Quinnipiac poll show him gaining a lead on the lieutenant governor, with 12 percent to her 23 percent.

“A lieutenant governor who says Republicans can’t win the Legislature just accepted the endorsement of a lifelong Democrat who said Republicans can’t win the governor’s race. Guadagno and Piscopo – perfect together I guess,” Ciattarelli said.

Gov. Chris Christie previously accused Piscopo of pretending to consider a run for governor to boost ratings on his television show. Piscopo recently signed a new contract for the show, which he would have had to give up - according to FCC rules - if he ran.

“He never had any intention of running for governor, as a Democrat, as a Republican, as an Independent, as a Martian,” Christie said.

Guadagno didn't rule out another political spot for Piscopo down the line if she were to win.

“Whoever’s with me early on, I’m going to be with at the end,” she said. “We’ll leave it at that.”

Not since the 19th century has New Jersey elected anyone other than a top-party candidate.

A Quinnipiac poll taken before Piscopo’s announcement showed Democratic frontrunner Phil Murphy defeating Guadagno 50 to 25 percent.

The primary is June 6.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

  • PoliticsMore>>

  • GOP leaders move to appease Rubio, finalize big tax bill

    GOP leaders move to appease Rubio, finalize big tax bill

    Friday, December 15 2017 7:00 AM EST2017-12-15 12:00:45 GMT
    Friday, December 15 2017 12:12 PM EST2017-12-15 17:12:40 GMT
    (Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Kelly Craft) U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio at Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., July 20, 2017.(Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Kelly Craft) U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio at Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., July 20, 2017.

    Congressional Republicans finalized their sweeping tax package Friday, expanding its child tax credit to placate Sen. Marco Rubio.

    Congressional Republicans finalized their sweeping tax package Friday, expanding its child tax credit to placate Sen. Marco Rubio.

  • Former ‘Apprentice’ star Omarosa denies White House firing

    Former ‘Apprentice’ star Omarosa denies White House firing

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 10:17 AM EST2017-12-13 15:17:17 GMT
    Thursday, December 14 2017 10:20 AM EST2017-12-14 15:20:28 GMT
    (Alex Wong/Getty Images) U.S. President Donald Trump listens to Director of Communications for the White House Public Liaison Office Omarosa Manigault during an event in the Oval Office of the White House Oct. 24, 2017, in Washington, D.C.(Alex Wong/Getty Images) U.S. President Donald Trump listens to Director of Communications for the White House Public Liaison Office Omarosa Manigault during an event in the Oval Office of the White House Oct. 24, 2017, in Washington, D.C.

    Former “Apprentice” star Omarosa says she resigned after a conversation with White House chief of staff John Kelly about some of her concerns.

    Former “Apprentice” star Omarosa says she resigned after a conversation with White House chief of staff John Kelly about some of her concerns.

  • Murphy names his pick to lead New Jersey's Treasury

    Murphy names his pick to lead New Jersey's Treasury

    Wednesday, December 13 2017 12:52 PM EST2017-12-13 17:52:56 GMT
    Assemblywoman Elizabeth Muoio was nominated to be New Jersey's next treasurer.Assemblywoman Elizabeth Muoio was nominated to be New Jersey's next treasurer.

    Democratic Gov.-elect Phil Murphy says he is nominating a Democratic assemblywoman to be New Jersey's next treasurer.

    Democratic Gov.-elect Phil Murphy says he is nominating a Democratic assemblywoman to be New Jersey's next treasurer.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 5 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login, create an account or subscribe to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."