The perpetual political candidate who calls himself Weedman is in a legal struggle to get back on November's ballot for a congressional seat.
Rulings in June from a judge and the state's top election official found that Ed Forchion did not have the required 100 valid signatures on his petition to run in the 3rd Congressional District.
He is appealing, arguing that some signatures were invalidated wrongly.
Forchion, one of New Jersey's best-known advocates for legalizing marijuana, is also one of the state's highest-profile independent and minor party candidates in elections nearly every year. But he's hardly alone. Twenty-five other independent candidates are running for Congress in New Jersey this year. They're on the ballots in 11 of 12 districts.
In the 3rd District, which stretches from the Philadelphia suburbs to the shore and where the race between Republican Tom MacArthur and Democrat Aimee Belgard for an open seat is the state's most closely watched, the ballot also includes Frederick John LaVergne. He is a member of the Democratic-Republican Party and says he deserves support because he is not beholden to a political party machine.
Most independents don't expect to win but do have a point to make: some about marijuana, others about corruption, the environment or bullying.
Forchion said he expects that if he can run, he might draw a few votes from Belgard, and he's not sorry about it.
"Maybe next election, Democrats will be more supportive of legalization of marijuana," he said.
Besides Forchion, only one other person who submitted papers to run for a New Jersey congressional seat this year was ousted from the ballot.
Forchion is due in court Monday for a side argument. To proceed with his appeal, he has been told to produce the transcripts from a previous court hearing. He says that requirement should be waived because he does not have the nearly $4,000 that the transcripts could cost.
If Forchion loses this effort, it could put an end to his candidacy this time around.
Forchion said that out of the dozen or so times he has run for office, this is the third time he's been stopped because he didn't have enough signatures of eligible voters.
He acknowledges that he didn't get enough signatures in those earlier races.
But he says that despite the challenge this time from the Democratic State Committee, he should have qualified this year. He said he submitted 211 signatures — and 114 of them were thrown out.
"Those signatures are good," Forchion said this week. "I'd bet my last joint."