In race to replace NJ’s Sen. Menendez, first lady Tammy Murphy would have advantages few women share

October 26, 2023

New Jersey Democrats are searching for top-flight candidates to run for the seat held by Sen. Robert Menendez in 2024 — and perhaps the biggest name who has come up so far is Tammy Murphy, wife of Gov. Phil Murphy.

In the primary for this year’s legislative elections — when every seat in the Assembly and state Senate will be on the ballot — women made up just 28% of state Senate candidates with county line endorsements, according to research compiled by Julia Sass Rubin, a Rutgers University professor and trustee of the Good Government Coalition of New Jersey.

If Tammy Murphy runs for Menendez’s seat, many good government activists, political science professors and political operatives expect her to quickly rack up county party support, much as her husband did.

“She would be a strong candidate because of factors that would be at work in other states as well, name recognition and such, but also because of our very unique and very broken system of endorsements, which essentially guarantee the win to those candidates that are selected by the county party chairs,” said Sass Rubin, the Rutgers professor.

Gothamist, October 26, 2023

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