A judge’s decision is sending shockwaves through N.J., where politics is ruled by backroom deals

April 1, 2024

It’s called the “county line” — and it’s been the stuff of backroom Jersey politics that allowed party bosses to play an outsized role for decades in determining the winners and losers on election day.

Now, a federal judge may have changed all of that with a 49-page ruling Friday that sent shockwaves through the state and could forever curb the power of those bosses.

It marked a dramatic victory for grassroots activists who railed for years against the unique but controversial system, in which parties across New Jersey give preferential placement on primary election ballots to endorsed candidates. Even more stunning was it came about after Gov. Phil Murphy tried to use that power to help snag a seat for his wife Tammy Murphy in the U.S. Senate, sparking a lawsuit by U.S. Rep. Andy Kim, D-3rd Dist.

Julia Sass Rubin, an associate dean at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Policy at Rutgers, found that being on the county line gave congressional candidates an advantage of 38 percentage points.

Nj.com, April 01, 2024

Recent Posts

Voorhees Transportation Center seeks new Executive Director

The Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center (VTC) seeks a new Executive Director who will oversee the center’s research program, technical services and other initiatives, including external relations, communications, business development, and fundraising. The Executive...

How the heat will continue to affect your commute

Clinton J. Andrews, director of the Center for Urban Policy Research at Rutgers University, joins Drive Time with Michael Wallace to discuss how the heat affects transit infrastructure in and around the city.    WCBS AM-NY, July 11, 2024

Chen et al. Leverage GPS Data for HIV Prevention

Using GPS-defined venue-based affiliation networks among Black sexually minoritized men and transgender women to identify locations for HIV prevention interventions Purpose HIV biomedical intervention uptake is suboptimal among Black sexually minoritized men (SMM) and...

Report Release: R/ECON Forecast Summer 2024

By Will Irving READ REPORT R/ECON’s economic forecast for New Jersey as of June 2024 continues to show a slowing trajectory, though the decline in annual GDP growth is not as pronounced as in the prior forecast. The anticipated slowdown has also been deferred from...

Dean Shapiro: Reflections on the Chevron Decision

With Chevron overturned, Americans’ faith in government will sink even further On Friday, the Supreme Court overturned the 1984 decision Chevron v. NRDC, critical in American regulatory policy. Under Chevron, courts were to defer to federal agency interpretations of...

Upcoming Events

Event Series CAREERS

Virtual Career Drop-ins


Stop by virtually on Mondays (except for holidays) beginning September 9th through December 16th between 11 am and 1 pm to ask a quick (15 min) career-related question of Bloustein […]