Groundbreaking Gubernatorial Race in NJ Comes to a Close

Ella Connors, News Editor

The New Jersey Gubernatorial Race made history this year. As recorded by CNN, Democrat Phil Murphy took the win over Republican Jack Ciatterelli, being the first New Jersey governor of the Democratic party to be reelected since 1977.
ABC News reported that Stami Williams, Ciatterelli’s spokesperson, was quick to denounce the call as “irresponsible” due to the tight margins between candidates. Despite it taking ten days, Ciattarelli did eventually concede the election (New York Times). However, Ciattarelli is still content with the Republican accomplishments achieved during his race. According to the New York Times, he said “I’m proud of how we helped reinvigorate the Republican Party and mobilized new people who have never been involved before.”
Murphy also gave a speech in Asbury Park where he stated his goal to be a governor for both Republicans and Democrats, although his agenda does not give any signs that he is going to pull back on many of his left leaning policies. According to ABC News, some of these progressive accomplishments which he built his campaign on include “a phased-in $15 an hour minimum wage and paid sick leave along with taxes on the wealthy.”
As a result of Covid 19, all eyes were on Murphy during this election. Whether he won or lost, it would be a testament to his policies over the past two years, and if people were satisfied with his handling of a global pandemic, especially when so many policies are still left up to the individual states. For instance, Murphy mandated masks in the New Jersey public school system, and quite recently, he insisted that the mandate is not ready to be lifted just yet (Insider NJ). However, there were some people who were not as pleased with Murphy’s tight Covid restrictions, or with his left-leaning performance in general. The margins which he won by in 2021 were much tighter than the margins he won by in 2017. GOP voters showed up at much higher rates this time around (ABC).
President of the Democrats club at Ramapo, Angela Delano, said that she was “extremely relieved to hear the results of the election and was glad to see that Governor Murphy was re-elected.” She said that “it was a tight race”, but she looks forward to seeing the progress to be made, specifically in dealing with the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.
Governor Murphy has a second term in office, and the people will be waiting with anticipation to see what he makes of it.