‘Kim-mentum?’ A tide of unease about Tammy Murphy washes across NJ Democratic grassroots

January 29, 2024

Fueling this year’s general election is a fear that the democracy “entrusted to the hands of the American people,” as George Washington declared in his first inaugural address, is on the verge of collapse.

Democrats are terrified that former President Donald Trump, with his authoritarian impulses and his taste for revenge, will trash long-held standards and institutions that unify the nation and prevent it from devolving into a banana republic.

MAGA Republicans on the right, meanwhile, accept as an article of faith that the Justice Department and the “deep state” are out to destroy Trump in a bid to preserve their power. The system is rigged, they assert.

So, amid all this bipartisan anxiety about the fate of American democracy, how have the New Jersey Democratic Party — and the lobbyists in its orbit — responded?

By putting on a public clinic in anti-Democratic machine politics — a rigged system in action, flexing its hubris and arrogance…

Kim’s campaign has attracted activists who have mobilized in recent years in an effort to reform or abolish the county party ballot “line,” which confers an enormous advantage in primaries for incumbents and significantly limits the competitive threat of challengers. A recent study conducted by Julia Sass Rubin, a professor at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers, examined 45 congressional and Senate races in New Jersey between 2002 and 2022. The study found that on average, county-endorsed candidates placed in the line enjoyed a 38-point advantage.

Sass Rubin and other activists have traveled around the state crusading against the line and its dangers to the Democratic process. And now, the swift support for the first lady from the large county machine leaders served as a stunning Exhibit A of the process.

NorthJersey.com, January 29, 2024

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