NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Murphy projected to win in New Jersey

The Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty has secured its first major pick­up of the Trump error tonight by recap­tur­ing the gov­er­nor­ship of New Jer­sey from the Repub­li­cans, putting an end to eight years of mis­man­age­ment by Don­ald Trump backer Chris Christie.

Sec­onds after polls closed at 8 PM Eastern/5 PM Pacif­ic, mass media declared Mur­phy the vic­tor, pro­ject­ing that he would become the state’s next gov­er­nor. Christie’s lieu­tenant Kim Guadag­no was the Repub­li­can nom­i­nee.

“Thank you, New Jer­sey! We’re ready to have your back in Tren­ton!,” tweet­ed a very hap­py Mur­phy, who post­ed a pho­to of him­self on Twit­ter with his Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor-elect, Sheila Oliv­er.

Mur­phy’s win rais­es the num­ber of states with a Demo­c­ra­t­ic tri­fec­ta from six to sev­en. (It could go to eight in a few hours if Democ­rats retake the Wash­ing­ton State Sen­ate by flip­ping the 45th LD, the 31st LD, or both from red to blue.)

“In Mr. Mur­phy,” wrote The New York Times’ Nick Corasan­i­ti fol­low­ing the Asso­ci­at­ed Press’ call of the race, “vot­ers select­ed Mr. Christie’s oppo­site — an ener­getic politi­cian who yearns to be liked, embraces unions, loathes the pres­i­dent, sup­ports gun con­trol and has been open about his will­ing­ness to raise tax­es on the wealthy to help fix the state’s floun­der­ing econ­o­my.”

The Demo­c­ra­t­ic Gov­er­nors Asso­ci­a­tion released a state­ment hail­ing Mur­phy’s vic­to­ry and not­ing Repub­li­cans had not con­ced­ed the race pri­or to Elec­tion Day.

“Con­grat­u­la­tions to Gov­er­nor-Elect Phil Mur­phy,” said Con­necti­cut Gov­er­nor Dan Mal­loy, who cur­rent­ly chairs the DGA.

“Phil ran an incred­i­ble cam­paign focused on his vision for an econ­o­my that works for all Gar­den State fam­i­lies, and I look for­ward to work­ing with him.”

“The DGA was proud to invest near­ly $4 mil­lion and play a key role in pick­ing up this crit­i­cal seat. New Jer­sey vot­ers made clear that they are ready to turn the page from 8 years of failed poli­cies and failed lead­er­ship in New Jer­sey.”

“This result points to larg­er prob­lems for Repub­li­cans as they play defense in many open-seat races com­ing up next year. Today’s elec­tion was not just a vic­to­ry for Gov­er­nor-Elect Mur­phy. It was a vic­to­ry for the near­ly nine mil­lion New Jer­sey res­i­dents who will now have a Gov­er­nor look­ing out for them: for their edu­ca­tion, for their health care, and for their jobs.”

The DGA’s state­ment went on to note that:

Repub­li­cans raised and spent sig­nif­i­cant mon­ey in New Jer­sey despite Phil Murphy’s strong per­for­mance and polling through­out the cam­paign.  In Novem­ber 2016, RGA Chair­man Scott Walk­er laid a mark­er that Repub­li­cans expect­ed to com­pete and win in New Jer­sey, say­ing “We think we can do well in both Vir­ginia – where we have a chance for a pick­up – and New Jer­sey in 2017.” This Sep­tem­ber, RGA Chair­man Scott Walk­er and Gov­er­nor Christie teamed up to host a fundrais­er for Kim Guadag­no that net­ted $2.1 mil­lion. On top of that, they’ve spent over $2 mil­lion on Guadagno’s behalf.

Mur­phy’s win was called as Democ­rats in Vir­ginia were surg­ing to vic­to­ry; all three statewide can­di­dates in the Old Domin­ion have now been declared the win­ners.

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