Somerset County Democrat have nominated Franklin Councilwoman Shanel Robinson and Bernardsville school board member Sara Sooy as their candidates for freeholder.
They will face Republican incumbents Mark Caliguire and Patrick Scaglione.
Robinson, a U.S. Air Force veteran, ran last year and came within 1,489 votes of winning a freeholder seat. Sooy is the daughter of Bernardsville Mayor Kevin Sooy, who switched his party affiliation from Republican to Democrat last week.
After unseating the Republican County Clerk last November and winning two Assembly seats in the once reliably Republican 16th district, Democrats are positioned to mount a competitive campaign in 2018 against two Republican Freeholders.
There are now 13,131 more Democrats registered in Somerset than Republicans. Fifteen years ago, Republicans had an edge of 15,707. Somerset has gone Democratic in the last three presidential elections, with Hillary Clinton receiving a massive 20,184-vote plurality. Democrats haven’t had control since Lyndon Johnson’s coattails gave it to them in 1964 and haven’t won a freeholder seat since Michael Ceponis won in 1979.