Republican Truck Driver Beats Sweeney in N.J. Election

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For virtually a 10 years, Stephen M. Sweeney, the 2nd most effective lawmaker in New Jersey, appeared definitely unassailable. He boasted deep ties to the most feared political energy broker in the state and unyielding aid from the influential developing trade unions. 4 several years back, the state’s teachers union put in far more than $5 million to unseat him. He gained by 18 factors.

This year, his challenger was Edward Durr, a truck driver for Raymour & Flanagan, a home furnishings chain, who experienced under no circumstances just before held place of work. His campaign video was shot on a smartphone.

Nevertheless Mr. Sweeney, the State Senate president and a Democrat, was ousted in a surprising political upset by Mr. Durr, a Republican, as voters opted for a political not known in a outcome that right away rattled the political moorings of the condition, which almost noticed the ouster of Gov. Philip D. Murphy the governor narrowly won re-election in excess of his Republican challenger, Jack Ciattarelli.

But it was Mr. Sweeney’s decline that was maybe most emblematic of the predicament going through Democrats in suburban and exurban communities.

The Affiliated Press termed the race on Thursday morning, as Mr. Durr preserved a 2,298-vote guide about Mr. Sweeney with all precincts counted.

Though Mr. Sweeney’s district in the southwestern aspect of the point out has never been deeply blue like the northeastern counties, it has reliably elected a Democrat considering that its creation in 1973, conserve for 1 year when the Democratic incumbent switched get-togethers.

Mainly composed of blue-collar suburbs and elements of the city of Camden, Mr. Sweeney held a vise grip on the district as a result of potent allies and a decidedly reasonable file, enjoying to his track record as an ironworker and union chief.

But as assist for Democrats evaporated in the suburbs and exurbs in the two New Jersey and Virginia, Mr. Sweeney identified himself with no the operating-class backing he had so often relied on staying a Democratic lawmaker all through an period of coronavirus lockdowns, mandates in colleges and dysfunction in Washington was ample to erode what was when unshakable guidance.

This is a acquiring story and will be up-to-date.