Christie won Adler's district by 17 points
Left to right: U.S. Rep. John Adler (D-Cherry Hill), former Philadelphia Eagles tackle Jon Runyan, and Rear Admiral Maurice Hill (ret.), a Toms River Councilman. By Wally Edge | December 18th, 2009 - 2:44pm
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Despite his $1 million war chest and a one year head start, freshman U.S. Rep. John Adler (D-Cherry Hill) is suddenly in trouble.  One year after Adler was elected to Congress by a 52%-48% margin, Republican Christopher Christie carried the third district by a massive 56%-39% margin over Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine.  Christie carried 45 of the 52 towns in Adler's district, and beat Corzine by over 35,000 votes.  In 2008, Barack Obama carried the district 52%-47%, and George W. Bush won it 51%-49% in 2004.

Now the race for the GOP nomination to take on Adler seems to have attracted at least two formidable candidates: NFL defensive tackle Jon Runyan, who spent ten years with the Philadelphia Eagles; and three-term Toms River Councilman Maurice "Mo" Hill, a dentist and retired U.S. Navy Rear Admiral who served in Operational Desert Storm.  Runyan, a 36-year-old Mount Laurel resident, said today that he will officially retire from the NFL after the current season is over and plans to formally announce his candidacy in February.  Hill, 62, is leaning towards running - he was re-elected to his Council seat with 69% of the vote last month.  Toms River is the largest municipality in the district; 13% of the total votes cast in the gubernatorial election came from Toms River. (Hill is a ward councilman and has never run townwide.)

It will be up to Ocean County GOP Chairman George Gilmore to decide if he wants to clear the field for Runyan, who already has the backing of the Burlington County GOP organization.  Gilmore is riding high this year after delivering Christie a 70,000 vote margin out of Ocean, and may not want to let Burlington have a second shot at the House seat.  But Gilmore has not closed the door to backing Runyan, and will probably wait to see what Runyan does once the football season is over -- read that as "how big a check will Runyan write to his own campaign, and how much money can he raise by March 1."

In the 2008 Republican primary, Medford Mayor Christopher Myers (backed by the Burlington GOP) beat Gilmore's candidate, Ocean County Freeholder Jack Kelly, by a 49%-25% margin.  Ocean produced 51% of the total votes cast, but Kelly was hurt by the presence of a third candidate, former Tabernacle Councilman Justin Murphy, who beat Kelly by nearly 1,800 votes in Burlington.  Myers also had the line in Camden County, which produces about 5% of the total GOP primary votes.

Adler won the seat of Republican James Saxton (R-Mt. Holly), who retired in 2008 after 24 years in Congress; he was the first Democrat to win this seat since Thomas Ferrell won it in 1882; Ferrell lost two years later.

The Back Room

McGreevey expresses no desire to be power broker in Newark mayoral race

Former New Jersey Governor James McGreevey might remember that former Newark Mayor Sharpe James played a significant role in helping him to get that title. But regarding the highly contentious Newark mayoral race between candidates Ras Baraka and Shavar Jeffries, McGreevey told PolitickerNJ.com on Thursday that he has no interest in picking a side.  

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Wake-Up Call

Morning Digest: April 17, 2014

Bergen Dems demand Donovan cancel fundraiser with Christie after unlimited contributions commentsHACKENSACK - Bergen County Democratic Chairman Lou Stellato called on Bergen County Executive Kathleen Donovan to cancel a fundraiser scheduled for May 5 with Gov. Chris Christie after he made remarks on allowing unlimited campaign contributions to political...

Op-Ed

The future of NJ Politics should not be politicians investigating politicians

By JON BRAMNICK Voices around the country agree with our concern that "bipartisan committee led by John Wisniewski is partisan." Below are observers who agree Wisneiwski's committee is not bipartisan: Chuck Todd, NBC News: "Democrats made a mistake... Read More >

Contributors

(4-16-14) New Jersey Vote By Mail Law - The voter turnout for New Jersey’s November gubernatorial election was the lowest since the days of prohibition, coming... more »
When it comes to profiling Christie, facts are for wussies (4/10/14) - As the national media stories on our Guv pile up, expect more blunders about the Garden State.... more »
This week I begin a series called Dispatches from Somewhere Else. Based on my on-going experiences as an everyman in New Jersey politics, these Dispatches review the hollowness of... more »
Watching Governor Chris Christie's shocking BridgeGate implosion, it's easy to forget the time when he truly seemed unstoppable.  Blessed with incredible political gifts and a Jersey bluster to match,... more »

Quote of the Day

Quote of the day

“The new agenda is charter schools. It’s a profit-making business. $500 million will not be in our hands. The school board is an advisory board. We are not going to tell the governor to unleash the dollars. Don’t be fooled. It’s not abracadabra. It’s politics.” - Paterson Mayor Jeff Jones

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