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Bergen County Democratic Chairman Paul Juliano. (Photo: Rocco Mazza).

Juliano wins third term by acclamation

Bergen County Democratic chairman assembled strong endorsements despite running unopposed

By David Wildstein, June 24 2022 1:10 am

Bergen County Democratic Chairman Paul Juliano was re-elected on Thursday night without opposition, giving him another term as the leader of a Democratic-leaning county – the largest in the state — that controls every county office.

This was the first time Juliano faced the voters – Democratic county committee members – since a State Senate primary in the 37th legislative district last year that pitted two sitting members of the State Assembly for an open seat.

Juliano had essentially staked his political future on the candidacy of Gordon Johnson, who defeated Valerie Vainieri Huttle by a whopping 72%-28% margin that included pluralities in every municipality in the district. Juliano had shepherded Johnson’ s campaign on a daily basis, raising money and running a full-scale campaign to give the organization line a solid victory that included two contested Assembly seats.

In the general election, Juliano oversaw a campaign that gave Gov. Phil Murphy a 15,506-vote five percentage point win in Bergen County – and protected Democratic incumbents in a tough political environment.

As he begins his third term, Juliano potentially faces another competitive election as he seeks to re-elect County Executive James Tedesco and three county commissioners.

A list of endorsements put out by Juliano in advance of the vote included Murphy, U.S. Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker, Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-Wyckoff) ad Bill Pascrell (D-Paterson), eleven countywide elected officials, four state senators, eight members of the State Assembly, 56 Democratic municipal chairs, and his predecessor, Louis Stellato.

Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin was in attendance for the party leadership meeting.

Juliano won a July 2019 special election for county chairman after Stellato stepped down to become a commissioner of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority.

The Fairview Public Works Director, Juliano became the clear front-runner when Mahwah Democratic Municipal Chairman Todd Scherer announced that he would not be a candidate and would support Juliano.  He ran unopposed in 2019 and again in 2020.

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