Surprising many, current Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, in a press conference in front of the Jersey City city hall (see video below), has declined to join the New Jersey 2017 gubernatorial race. Instead, Fulop will be seeking a second term for mayor of Jersey City next year, to the dismay of many other politicians hoping to run next year. The Jersey City mayoral election will either take place in May or November of next year, depending on a referendum that will be voted on next month. During the press conference he endorsed fellow Democrat Phil Murphy, former United States Ambassador to Germany. Fulop’s endorsement of Murphy has also changed the race for the Democratic Party.
|Credit: Reema Rose Sibayan (Jersey Journal)|
Many believed Stephen Sweeney, Senate President of New Jersey, would be Murphy’s primary competitor for governor. However, after the endorsement by Mayor Fulop, Sweeney declined to run for governor, instead deciding to seek re-election in the Senate. Sweeney stated in an interview with NJ Advanced Media, “I’m a realist. The party is coalescing around Phil. I made a decision to run for re-election to the Senate. I have a lot of support from my colleagues in the Senate.” Although not every competitor has announced their candidacy for governor, many see Phil Murphy as the clear front-runner, at least for the Democratic Party.
|Credit: Amanda Marzullo (NJ Advanced Media)|
While the complete field of candidates has not been completed as of yet, three candidates have already announced their plan to take part in the race. State Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli and former Senate candidate Rudy Rullo have plan to run on the Republican side. Although there have been various rumors of who might run on the Democratic side of things, Phil Murphy has been the only individual to declared his candidacy. In a Fairleigh Dickenson University poll held in September of 2014, the university asked 721 registered voters through telephone who they wanted to run in the election. Democrats voted overwhelmingly for former New Jersey Governor Richard Codey with 27%, despite stating to the Star Ledger that he would not be running for governor. Others receiving votes were Stephen Sweeney (9%) and Steven Fulop (3%). 55 percent were undecided. The poll was also ask Republican voters about who they desired to see run. Leading the pack was Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey, Kim Guadagno at 12%, followed by Minority Leader of the New Jersey General Assembly, John Bramnick (4%). A bulk of the voters (74%) remained undecided.
|Credit: Chris Pedota (The Record)|
Featured Image Credit: Reema Rose Sibayan (Jersey Journal)
Featured Video Credit: Hudson TV
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