District 34 includes four communities in Essex and Passaic counties: Clifton, East Orange, Montclair and Orange. Democrats account for almost half of all registered voters. About 8 percent of voters are Republican; most of the rest have no party affiliation.
Both Democratic incumbents are seeking re-election. Assemblywoman Sheila Oliver, the former Assembly speaker who is finishing her 12th year in office, is a resident of East Orange and serves as assistant Essex County administrator. Assemblyman Thomas Giblin is a labor union officer who resides in Montclair and was first elected to the Assembly in 2005.
Two candidates are opposing them: John M. Traier of Clifton is the lone Republican on the ballot and Clenard Childress Jr. of East Orange is running as an independent under the slogan “A Better Tomorrow.”