Almost half of all Phil Murphy’s Democratic primary votes in Hudson County this week came from one legislative district, the 33rd District represented by State Senator (and Union City Mayor) Brian Stack.
The former Goldman Sachs executive and Ambassador to Germany, Murphy won this week’s Democratic primary for Governor with 238,524 votes statewide, or 48% of the vote in a divided Democratic field.
Hudson County accounted for 31,232 of Murphy’s votes (64% of the total). But as an exclusive HudsonTV.com analysis of voting results reveals, almost half of the county’s Murphy votes came from areas Stack represents. The numbers show the hidden story in Hudson County was turnout and the success, or lack of it, of certain political leaders in getting the vote out for Murphy, who was endorsed by just about everyone. Murphy did better in Hudson County than he did statewide, but a town by town analysis shows the credit for that should go almost entirely to Stack.
Murphy got 31,232 votes (64.5%) of the Hudson Democratic vote, but 46% came from Stack’s 33rd Legislative District, centered around Union City, but which also includes all of Weehawken, all of Hoboken and parts of four wards in Jersey City.
Stack’s 33rd District produced 14,343 votes for Murphy, or approximately 64.3% of gubernatorial primary votes from that district. The 33rd District had 64,879 registered Democrats as of the primary, according to state figures. Approximately 34% of 33rd District Democrats cast votes in the gubernatorial primary. Stack also personally received more than 20,000 votes running unopposed for State Senate, according to the Hudson County Clerk.
Murphy’s support was strongest in Stack’s base, which naturally is Union City. Murphy got 7,801, or 74%, of Union City’s Democratic primary votes out of 10,554 total votes. A remarkable 56% of Union City’s approximately 18,838 registered Democrats (based on June 2016 city figures) cast votes in the race for Governor.
In comparison, North Bergen, which is a comparable size town (18,444 registered Democrats as of the June 2016 primary, less than 400 fewer than Union City), accounted for only 5,018 Murphy votes (69% of the total of 7,216 votes cast).
The only Hudson County municipality in which Murphy got more votes was Jersey City, which gave him 9,540 votes. Jersey City’s mayor, Steven Fulop, was expected to run this year for Governor until declining to run late last year. However, even in Jersey City, more than one-third, or 3,315, of those votes came from the districts lying in Stack’s 33rd District..
in a city of approximately 60,666 registered Democrats (more than three times the number registered in Union City or North Bergen), Murphy actually ran worse than he did statewide (under 47% of the vote) and lost some districts to Jim Johnson. Overall turnout was barely over one third of registered Democrats.
Murphy will now oppose a Republican nominee, Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno, for whom Republican voters seem equally unenthusiastic for. Guadagno, who has been Chris Christie’s lieutenant governor for nearly eight years now, got about 47% of the vote statewide and less than half of the county’s Republican voters (1,988 of 4,201). Guadagno now runs in a general election as the lieutenant governor of a term-limited Governor Chris Christie with job approval ratings in the teens.
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