Republican U.S. Senate candidate Tricia Flanagan conceded the race to rival candidate Rik Mehta, though she hedged on backing the pharmacist in November.
“I gave him the congratulatory call and said to him ‘I’m open,’” she told the New Jersey Globe. “I’m going to let him call me. I’d like to hear more about his platform and about what he offers, but as always, I’ve always been fighting for conservative Republican values, and I’m continuing that fight.”
Flanagan trails Singh 69,375 to 146,607. The frontrunner holds a far narrower lead over Hirsh Singh, who has secured at least 139,702 votes.
Singh, whose bid was buoyed by overwhelming victories in Ocean, Cumberland, Atlantic and Cape May Counties, did not immediately return a 10:25 a.m. call seeking comment.
The New Jersey Globe called the race for Mehta on July 10. U.S. Sen. Cory Booker (D-Newark), a popular figure fresh off a presidential campaign in a state where Democrats have won every U.S. Senate election since 197, is favored to win the general election.
Flanagan, who sought a U.S. Senate seat as an independent in 2018, appears to have shifted much of her focus to the party’s future statewide contests.
“I am all for unity,” she said. “I want to make sure that, in the future, we not only win at the federal level, but we’ve got that big gubernatorial race coming up in 2021, so I’m going to be very active in making sure that a constitutional conservative Republican is nominated for that seat.”
The two-time Senate candidate suggested she might seek a seat in the chamber again in 2024.
“I don’t think it’s too soon, right after we get Murphy out of office, to start looking at the next U.S. Senate seat that will be coming available,” she said.