Atlantic County Sheriff Eric Scheffler has endorsed Amy Kennedy for the Democratic nomination for Congress in New Jersey’s 2nd district, giving the former public school teacher her first major endorsement from a countywide elected official.
“I believe in Amy 1000%,” Scheffler told the New Jersey Globe. “I think she’s the right person for the job.”
The endorsement of a Democratic sheriff could boost Kennedy’s chances at the Atlantic County Democratic convention on March 8.
Earlier today, Scheffler participated in a roundtable discussion on the state’s mental health and addiction crisis.
Scheffler told the Globe that he sees a “direct correlation between mental health issues and reducing crime.”
Following the retirement of Republican sheriff Frank Bailes in 2017, Scheffler was elected with 53% of the vote against Republican Jack Glasser. He is expected to seek re-election this year.
Kennedy faces five opponents in the race for the Democratic nomination to take on party-switching Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-Dennis) in the fall: political science professor Brigid Callahan Harrison, Atlantic County freeholder Ashley Bennett, West Cape May Commissioner John Francis III, former congressional aide Will Cunningham, and former FBI agent Robert Turkavage.
Harrison has already won endorsements from two Democratic assemblymen from Atlantic County, Vince Mazzeo (D-Northfield) and John Armato (D-Buena Vista), and from Ernest Coursey, a district freeholder from Atlantic City.