Senator Dick Codey (D-27) defeated Senator Nia Gill (D-27) in their mashed together Essex County district.
Unofficially – 58.52 to 42%.
A supposed showdown of heavyweights, the contest proved a bore snore.
Codey had the line and money.
Gill didn’t have the line and didn’t have money.
The only drama occurred at the outset when Essex Democrats swapped out Assemblyman Tom Giblin and supplanted Alixon Collazos.
After that, the pair of senate titans played a game of political soft shoe, with Codey propelling more positive mail pieces into the district and Gill failing to keep pace.
Finally, the contest contained the expiration with nary a whisper of one of the state senate’s most formidable inquisitors, as Codey, a former governor of distinction, all but tiptoed back into office.
Part of the low drama factor came about as a consequence of Codey and Gill never having a beef, but receiving the lumped together sum of redistricting that protected other Democratic Party luminaries in the inner circle of Essex County Democratic Chairman LeRoy Jones.
If tonight’s victory for Codey gave the state’s longest serving senator another nine lives’ storyline, it also proved beneficial to Jones, who once personally lost an election to Gill, a political headache now out of his hair.
In addition, as the Democratic State Party chairman, Jones routinely encounters jealous rivals looking to create political havoc in his home county.
Codey versus Gill seemed to offer insiders the ultimate gladiatorial contest, while serving as an opportunity to give Jones fits in his own backyard.
The “contest” accomplished neither goal.
Again, it was boring, without a flicker of activity beyond the initial Giblin derailment.
And Jones never appeared to have to break a sweat, as Essex performed – anemically, as did the state – but to the expectations of the county chairman and statewide party leader.