Gov. Phil Murphy is taking sides in the Democratic primary for Essex County Sheriff, endorsing incumbent Armando Fontoura for re-election.
“Over the past year, we’ve seen just how important it is to have leaders who are committed to building a stronger and fairer New Jersey for all,” said Murphy. “And that’s why I’m proud to endorse my dear friend Armando Fontoura.”
Murphy cited Fontoura’s role in Essex County’s response to the Coronavirus pandemic.
“He helped keep residents and law enforcement officers safe, and he partnered with the county to establish testing sites when and where they were needed most and when we were ready to distribute vaccines,” Murphy said. “Sheriff Fonterra made sure that Essex County was prepared.”
The venerable Fontoura is seeking his 11th term as Sheriff in a primary against John Arnold and Barry Jackson.
Fontoura has run against Arnold, a former Essex County Prosecutor’s office captain of detectives, once before. In 2012, he beat him by 25,835 votes, 62%-19%, in a four-candidate primary.
“Sheriff Fontoura knows that we make our communities stronger and fairer by working together,” Murphy said. “And I know that if re-elected, he will continue his commitment to putting Essex County first.”