Primary Night Open Thread

Thoughts, arguments, ideas, rants, boos & yippees. If you’ve got ‘em post ‘em in the Comments below. 

8:22pm – It’s a new day in Lambertville, Hunterdon County. Julia Fahl, whose first taste of politics was volunteering for John Kerry in her home state of Albuquerque, New Mexico, and later was a fundraiser for first-time women candidates and Gov. Phil Murphy, challenged longtime L’ville mayor Dave DelVecchio, who was mayor for 26 years; that’s an extraordiny record of service. Julia is married to Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman’s NJ District Director Kari Osmond.

CD11: This is organization (or just overwhelming & well-funded support). Insider NJ is reporting Vote by Mail numbers in the 11th. Nobody comes close to Mikie Sherrill: Sherrill: 748, Tamara Harris: 83, Mark Washburne: 38, Alison Heslin: 22, Mitchell Cobert: 16. UPDATE: Mikie Sherrill will run against conservative Morris County Assemblyman Jay Webber, who is also a former NJGOP chair.

CD8 – R & D, ditto CD 12 R & D: Both the Republican (John Muniz) & Democratic (Albio Sires) races are uncontested.’s not even bothering to tabulate the result, and they make no bones about it. CD12  too (Bonnie Watson Coleman versus Dayrl Kipnis). Can hardly blame them. Busy night.

CD1: To absolutely nobody’s surprise, AP calls this race for incumbent Dem Donald Norcross , with 73.8.8% of precincts in. 

U.S. SENATE: Winner winner chicken dinner for Bob Hugin; AP is calling the GOP primary for him over Brian Goldberg with 30% of precincts in. And in Highland Park, bedroom community of Rutgers University and a town where a lot people working professionally in NJ politics live, Bob Menendez only beat Dem challenger Lisa McCormick 855-530. Menendez has his ethics cloud, but McCormick’s partner and de facto campaign manager has some questionable ethics issues himself that stain her campaign. Middlesex-wide, right now it’s 60%-40% Menendez over McCormick; a decent lead, but not big enough that I don’t worry about November. The numbers say far more about Menendez’ weakness and November vulnerabilities, than it does about Lisa McCormick. Put better: So many people voted not-Menendez that a candidate with no money, who runs every year for something, has little to no grassroots organizational support, an ethically-challenged partner/campaign manager, and is generally a take-no-notice candidate, got 157,000 votes. Clearly, almost none of those votes were about her. Democrats walked into the booth, saw an alternative name, and chose it.

I found this quote, on Facebook by newly-named Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics director Micah Rasmussen, pretty interesting:

“A state party that does not take a long, hard look at an abysmal electoral performance by an incumbent United States senator– who lost a virtually unopposed race in several counties– is sticking its head in the sand.”

CD7: With 57.3% of the precincts in, AP has called the race: Tom Malinowski 68.97%, Peter Jacob 19.81%, Goutam Jois 11.33%.

CD11: AP calls it for Mikie Sherrill with 50.9% of precincts in: Sherrill 76.12% of the vote, with the nearest competitor Tamara Harris at 15.61%

CD2: In one of the 2 districts where longtime Republican incumbents were scared away by grassroots resistance that predates most of the 2018 primary campaign, AP calls the race for George Norcross asset Assemblyman Jeff Van Drew, who has a 100% Rating from the NRA. With 71.9% of precincts reporting, AP has Van Drew at 57.63%, Tanzie Youngblood at 19.75%, Will Cunningham at 14.15% and finally Nate Kleinman at 8.48%.

CD6: It’s Frank Pallone. Natch.

CD2: Well that’s a surprise. Looks like Jeff Van Drew will be running against Seth Grossman, the executive director of a non-profit called Liberty and Prosperity – not Hirsh Singh. Grossman has won the CD2 Republican primary over engineer Hirsh Singh.

CD4: With nearly 100% of the precincts in, Josh Welle over Jim Keady – 57.17% over 42.83%.

U.S. Senate: This tweet from Patrick Murray, who runs the Monmouth Poll. Aaaaand this one too.

Comments (6)

  1. deciminyan

    I worked for Julia Fahl as a full-time volunteer when Julia was Aimee Belgard’s Finance Director in 2014. She’s a highly energetic, fiercely intelligent woman and the people of Lambertville are lucky to have her.

  2. Bertin Lefkovic

    Norcross gets 83% of the vote in CD1 while Menendez is only winning Camden County by less than 4K votes. This has nothing to do with Menendez or McCormick. It is all about getting Menendez out of the race and Norcross into his seat.

    1. Danton

      Donald Norcross wouldn’t be the worst candidate for Senate if Menendez were “encouraged” to drop out. (But there’s better possibilities.) The protest vote against Menendez was statewide and spontaneous. No evidence the Norcross machine tried to cut Menendez’s vote. The State party leaders should think long and hard about why Trump was able to stick the “Crooked Hillary” label on Mrs. Clinton – and she was never indicted!

      1. Bertin Lefkovic

        Menendez received 56% of the vote in Camden County. The Democratic establishment Freeholder candidates received 76%. Show me another example of a primary election cycle where there was such a disparity between two candidates on the same “party line”.

        1. Al Arroyo

          And we’re saying that 2.3 million plus unaffiliated citizens of New Jersey just stayed home. Not a one of them went to the poll (urged on by some political organization or other) and signed up as an “R” or “D”?

          1. Bertin Lefkovic

            I am not sure what that has to do with anything. Only a very small percentage of registered voters vote in primary elections for good or ill (mostly ill – if more voted it is unclear if that would make it easier or harder for the Democratic establishment to rig).

            I just think that it is interesting that there was such a disparity between the voters who voted the “party line” in Camden County and the voters who voted for Menendez in Camden County who was on the “party line”?

            These kinds of disparities are very rare. People who are quick to defend the Democratic establishment have told me that they are actually quite common, but none have provided me with an example of another similar occurrence.

            However, for me to believe that this was purely a product of voter antipathy towards Menendez, it would mean that Camden County “party line” voters abhor Menendez’s corrupt behavior, but tolerate the corrupt behavior of the Norcross political machine.

            Occam’s razor says the simplest explanation is usually the correct one and it the idea that the Norcross political machine suppressed the Menendez vote is far simpler than the idea that “party line” voters are willing or able to differentiate between different flavors of corruption.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *