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Gov. Phil Murphy said he’s still figuring out which Democrats he’ll campaign for as the election enters its final weeks, though he’s already added some names to the list.
“We’re still looking at that,” Murphy said. “To some extent, it’s already baked. I’m going to be with Joe Lagana tonight in 38. I’ll be with Pat Lepore tonight, who’s a freeholder in Passaic County, to pick two. But that’s still evolving.”
Neither of those races are expected to be particularly competitive.
Democrats hold every countywide seat in Passaic. Last year, they easily defended three freeholder seats and won the county clerk’s seat by a little more than 17 points.
The 38th district — where Lagana’s running mates, Assembly members Lisa Swain and Christopher Tully are their first full terms — hasn’t hosted a competitive race since 2013, when Republicans in the district and around the state got a boost from Gov. Chris Christie, who was then at the height of his popularity.
Murphy’s comments Monday followed an unrelated press conference in the 21st district, where Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick and Assemblywoman Nancy Munoz are facing a tough re-election challenge from Democrats Lisa Mandelblatt and Stacey Gunderman.
Though Murphy has made several visits to the 21st, one of a few competitive districts in the state, over the past several months, he has yet to campaign with the two Assembly candidates.
He suggested that could change before election day.
“Sure, I’m the titular head of the Democratic party, so yes, the answer is we’re out morning noon and night trying to help Democratic candidates prevail,” Murphy said. “We’ve got a couple of really good candidates in this district, and they’re going to fight like heck.”