N.J. Democrats clash over message sent by voters

Nearly a week after Election Day, New Jersey Democrats are at odds over what the results mean.

Should the loss of seats in the Legislature for the second cycle in a row spur some soul searching about the party’s direction? Or should Democrats celebrate a gubernatorial victory despite GOP victories in other parts of the nation?

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Julia Sass Rubin, a professor at the Rutgers University Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, said Durr’s toppling of Sweeney, who was a target of progressives who believed he blocked much of Murphy’s liberal agenda, may work to the governor’s advantage. Rubin has been critical of Democrats who say Tuesday’s results mean the party has moved too far left.

Rubin maintains it’s premature for New Jersey Democrats to reflect on what the future looks like while tens of thousands of ballots remain to be counted, particularly in largely Democratic counties. Those could put Murphy’s margin at three to five percentage points, she said.

New Jersey Monitor, November 8, 2021