Home>Articles>Duarte enters race for Morris Dem chair with solid list of endorsements

Mendham Township Committeewoman Amalia Duarte. (Photo: Amalia Duarte).

Duarte enters race for Morris Dem chair with solid list of endorsements

11 municipal chairs, 4 Democratic mayors back candidate to replace Robinson

By David Wildstein, April 25 2022 12:42 pm

Mendham Township Committeewoman Amalia Duarte has formally entered the race for Morris County Democratic chair to replace Chip Robinson in a special election the week of May 9  that is expected to be held next month.

Robinson announced his resignation of Friday.  The New Jersey Globe first reported that Duarte would seek the post.

Her announcement was accompanied by the endorsements of  28 Morris County Democratic leaders, including 11 municipal chairs, four mayors, former Democratic county chairman Lewis Candura, and former vice chair Lisa Bhimani.

Duarte, who has won two elections in Republican-leaning Mendham, is a former newspaper reporter.

“I am excited to bring to the County my experience of winning elections in a Republican-dominated town, building up and serving as Chair of the MCDC Elected Officials Caucus, and forging strong relationships across Morris County with municipal committee chairs and district leaders, caucus leaders, candidates and grassroots organizations,” Duarte said.

No other candidates have entered the race. Parsippany Democratic Chairman Matt Clarkin has filed his letter of intent to preserve his option of entering the race, but he has not yet decided if he will become a candidate

One prospective contender, Scott Carlson, the current executive director of the county Democratic party, told the New Jersey Globe on Sunday that he would  not be a candidate.

“The future is bright for Morris County Democrats.  We need to unite to bring together the strongest possible county organization — one that harnesses our strengths, builds on the successes of recent years, and takes MCDC to the next level.  The stakes could not be higher in Morris County,” she said.  “For years now, Morris Democrats, especially women, have been doing the work to make positive change in their communities, engage our neighbors, register voters, and flip seats.  I represent this spirit of activism that has led to successes in Morris County.”

If she wins, Duarte will become the first woman and first Latina to chair the Morris County Democratic organization.  Women have held top posts in Morris on the Republican side, including Lois Johnson and the incumbent, Laura Marie Ali.

“As Chair, I will develop a strategic fundraising plan that will meet the needs of MCDC as well as our candidates. I will work with the New Jersey Democratic State Committee, and other Chairs with common interests, to ensure that our Congressional and statewide candidates receive support and resources from MCDC,” she said.  “I  will also ensure that MCDC can fund innovative initiatives focused on turning out the vote, messaging and voter registration.

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