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Chris Christie. Photo by Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe

Former Christie aide loses in Livingston

Democratic incumbents easily win re-election

By David Wildstein, November 07 2018 5:59 am

In the town where former Gov. Chris Christie grew up, one of his former aides got clobbered in his race for Livingston councilman.

Brandon Minde, a former assistant counsel to Christie who now works at the ex-governor’s old law firm, finished fourth in a field of five candidates for three township council seats.

The top vote-getter was Democrat Shawn Klein, who won his second term with 6,308 votes.  He was followed by mayor Edward Meinhardt (6,242) and longtime councilman Rudy Fernandez (6,195).  Minde won just 4,318 votes, followed by Republican Debbie Burack (3,300).

As mayor in 2013, Fernandez was among a group of Essex County Democrats who endorsed Christie for governor.

Democrats have a significant Democratic registration edge and the GOP has not won a local race in Livingston in eight years. Republicans have only fielded two candidates for the three seats, so they are not seeking control.  Minde and Burack, do not get along and are running separate campaigns.

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