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Assembly Speaker Pro-Tempore Gordon Johnson. (Photo: Assembly Majority Office.)

Cureton endorses Johnson for State Senate

Sheriff takes sides in fight for Loretta Weinberg’s seat

By David Wildstein, February 21 2021 5:37 pm

Bergen County Sheriff Anthony Cureton has endorsed Gordon Johnson for the Democratic State Senate nomination in the 37th district.

“It’s clear that Assemblymen Johnson is the right person for the job, and as our State Senator he will continue to serve the people of Bergen County with honor and integrity,” said Cureton, a lifelong Englewood resident where he spent 25 years as a police officer.

Johnson faces Valerie Vainieri Huttle for the chance to succeed retiring State Sen. Loretta Weinberg in a solidly Democratic district in a battle between two State Assembly colleagues.

A New Jersey Globe tally gives Johnson enough votes to secure the Bergen County Democratic organization line, but Vainieri Huttle has the backing of key progressive leaders, the Communications Workers of America, and more than a decade of serve as an assemblywoman and freeholder.

Vainieri Huttle has until Tuesday to decide if she will continue her Senate bid or hold on to her seat in the lower house.

If he wins, Johnson will become the first Black senator from Bergen County.

“District 37 is among the most diverse in the entire state, and our legislative delegation should reflect our communities,” said Cureton, who served as Bergen County NAACP president before he ran for sheriff in 2018.

Cureton is Bergen’s second Black sheriff; Johnson held the post on an acting basis before his election to the Assembly in 2001.

“Over the course of his career, both in law enforcement and as a state legislator, Gordon has been a leader on the issues that matter most to our communities. He has fought for social justice reform, improved school safety, stronger gun control laws, expanded access to health care, higher minimum wage, and protecting rights of women – just to name a few.” Cureton said.  “Gordon is a widely respected, solutions-oriented civic and community leader who is dedicated to improving people’s lives and protecting public safety.”

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