Promoted by Jason Springer: Now is the time to start organizing for 2009 races and that will pay dividends in 2010 all around the state.
Cross Posted on Retire Garrett
A victory for a Democrat in NJ-5 starts by mobilizing organizations on the county and municipal levels for 2009 elections. By registering new Democrats and spreading a strong message in 2009, voters in traditionally Republican areas become exposed to different ideas and policies.
The Democratic nominee in NJ-5 will most definitely have an uphill battle, but strong efforts need to be made in Sussex, Warren, and Passaic Counties. A Democrat can’t win simply by flipping Bergen County. Although it is the largest portion of the district, Garrett cannot be defeated without a better performance in the other 3 counties.
The following elections are taking place in 2009:
Freeholder Vernon Walton (D-inc) and Freeholder Julie O’Brien (D-inc) are up for reelection in 2009. Although, barring any unforeseen circumstances, both should win reelection fairly easily. However, this is an advantage to invest time and money in more Republican parts of NJ-5. A concerted effort needs to be made to register new voters and raise money for municipal organizations in traditionally Republican areas of the County.
Freeholder Jim Gallagher (D-inc), Freeholder Tahesha Way (D-inc), Freeholder Sonia Rosado (D-inc), and County Clerk Karen Brown (D-inc). Just as in Bergen, unless one of these officials faces a primary challenge (as Gallagher and Brown very possibly could) their seats are safe. All of these candidates need to make an effort to engage voters in more suburban parts of Passaic County. Rosado (according to Wally Edge of politickernj.com) is retiring. Whoever the Freeholder and Clerk candidates are they need to help by building the party up in the more rural areas.
Freeholder Susan Zellman (R-inc), Freeholder Glen Vetrano (R-inc), and County Surrogate Nancy Fitzgibbons. Freeholder Vetrano is retiring, which means there is an opportunity for Democrats to make a play at an open seat. This county is as red as it gets in New Jersey, but any effort to register more voters will help the cause in 2010.
Freeholder Everett A. Chamberlain (R-inc) is the only countywide official up for reelection in Warren County. Like Sussex, this is a very Republican county. However, the city of Phillipsburg has a Democratic Majority and is a place Democrats can build around in Warren.
This isn’t even mentioning of the Assembly seats (and countless municipal races) up for grabs in NJ-5, which should be another vehicle for organization and preparation for 2010. Winning in 2010 will be on the heels of a local, grassroots movement that begins with these races in 2009.