With Gov. Phil Murphy inviting a parade of steadily more prominent Democrats to visit New Jersey in recent weeks, New Jersey Republican Party Chairman Bob Hugin today derided the visits as evidence that the governor is concerned about his re-election chances.
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“[Murphy’s brought] Kamala Harris here, Joe Biden, former President Obama, Amy Klobuchar, Gina Raimondo – everybody and anybody that would come in and distract from the underlying failures of the Murphy administration,” Hugin said. “They have failed New Jerseyans on all counts.”
Hugin went on to contrast Murphy and his many rallies with Republican gubernatorial nominee Jack Ciattarelli, whom Hugin said was focused on his own race and didn’t need outside help to win.
“Jack is running on his vision for New Jersey,” Hugin said. “I think anybody else, other than Phil Murphy or Jack Ciattarelli, is obscuring the fact that that’s the choice we have, and those are the people we should be hearing from and listening to.”
But Ciattarelli himself has not completely refrained from campaigning with prominent national Republicans; most recently, he rallied with Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel in Burlington County last week, a rally which Hugin also attended.
Asked about the event with McDaniel, Hugin said that her visit was scheduled long ago, and Ciattarelli’s presence was mostly incidental.
“It happened to be that she was coming, so there was great enthusiasm for people to see her, but we didn’t go out and parade her,” he said. “But we’re not embarrassed to bring anybody in, we’re glad to bring people in.”