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Mikie Sherrill. Photo by Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe

Democratic congressional candidates carry Morris County, again

Combined votes of Sherrill and Malinowski prevail for third time, but with no coattails

By David Wildstein, November 22 2022 2:13 pm

Morris County Republicans haven’t lost a county election since 1973  — that’s the longest winning streak in New Jersey – but Democratic candidates for Congress who headed the ticket this year carried Morris County with 51% of the vote.

This represents the third consecutive federal election cycle where Democratic House candidates carried Morris County, and the second that they swept all federal offices.  But that didn’t stop Republicans from easily winning county races.

Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-Montclair) carried the Morris County portion of New Jersey’s 11th district  in 2022 by 8,769 votes (52.6%), while Republican Tom Kean outpolled Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-Ringoes) by 4,520 votes, 55%-45% in the 7th district’s Morris County towns.  Combined, Sherrill and Malinowski carried Morris County by 4,249 votes, 51%-49%.

Democrat Joe Biden won Morris County by 12,747 votes against Republican Donald Trump in 2020, 51%-47%.  U.S. Senator Cory Booker won Morris County by 4,775 votes, 50.2%-48.6%.

The combined votes of Sherrill and Malinowski also carried Morris in 2020 (50.7%) and in 2018 (52.9%).

James Gannon, the popular Republican sheriff, was unopposed in his bid for a third term this month.  He received 125,541 votes, which was 66,270 votes less than the total number of votes cast for congressional candidates.

The combined 97,421 votes cast for Sherrill and Malinowski was significantly higher than the 81,901 received by the top Democratic vote-getter in the county commissioner race, Judith Hernandez.  The total votes cast for Democratic congressional candidates was 3,906 votes less than for the top Republican vote-getter, Commissioner-elect Christine Myers, and 2,512 less than longtime Commissioner Douglas Cabana.

GOP strongholds like Cape May, Hunterdon, Sussex and Warren counties have elected Democrats more recently than Morris.  The last Democratic win was Douglas Romaine, who was elected to the Morris County Board of Freeholders in 1973.

The longest winning streak for Democrats in New Jersey is in Hudson County, where Republicans last elected district freeholders in 1984; the last time Republicans won a countywide at-large race in Hudson was in 1956.

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