Insider NJ’s General Election Day War Room (Updated 07:45AM)

7:45AM: Take a look at Insider NJ’s Who’s Up Who’s Down to see where the players stand after last night’s elections.


12:03AM: Sherrill supporters celebrate in Parsippany. 


11:40PM: Democrat Jaclyn Veasey was elected mayor of Evesham.


11:33PM: Democrats are projected to retake control of the House of Representatives; the GOP will retain control of the Senate.


11:27PM: Incumbent GOP Rep. Lance conceded to Democratic challenger Tom Malinowski.  


11:18PM: In Salem County, the GOP regained control of the  freeholder board according to unofficial tallies, as per a report by NJ.com.  GOP Sheriff Miller was also re-elected


11:14PM: In Bergen County, with 80% of the vote reported, incumbent Democrat County Executive Tedesco looks likely to cruise to victory, as will sheriff candidate Anthony Cureton. 


11:11PM: In Atlantic County, incumbent GOP Freeholder Frank Formica appears to have a sizeable lead in his bid for reelection, according a elections roundup by the Press of Atlantic City. 


11:01PM: The Mahwah mayor was recalled.


10:55PM:  In CD3’s match-up between incumbent GOP Rep. Tom MacArthur and Democratic challenger Andy Kim, a source says its ‘way too close to call‘ with T-Mac up by only 500 votes.


10:53PM: GOP candidate Rich Pezzullo conceded to Democratic incumbent Rep. Pallone.


10:49PM: In Carteret, Democratic incumbent Mayor Reiman has defeated GOP challenger Fred Gattuso 4256-978, according to unofficial results without VBMs.


10:44PM:  Passaic County Dem Clerk candidate Danielle Ireland-Imhof has defeated GOP candidate Ron Fava.


10:31PM: In Roseland, Democrats Spango, Fishman, and Freda were elected for mayor and council. 


10:28PM: Bob Hugin concedes the Senate race to victor Bob Menendez.


10:23PM: Democrat Tom Malinowski is the projected winner over incumbent GOP Rep. Lance in CD7.  There are still thousands of VBMs to be counted, but GOP sources doubt they will turn the election in their favor.


10:18PM: Somerset County Democrats won two freeholder board seats by 10,00 votes.


10:13PM: Democratic Rep. Josh Gottheimer has defeated GOP challenger John McCann in CD5.


10:06PM: CD2 Democratic candidate Senator Jeff Van Drew declared victory over GOP candidate Seth Grossman.


9:57PM: In Mount Laurel, Steglik and Pritchett won two council seats – making history in the process.


9:56PM: In Hoboken, the run-off election ballot question passed.


9:54PM: CD1 Rep. Norcross won re-election with over 63% of the vote. 


9:50PM: Democrat Mikie Sherrill has defeated Republican Jay Webber for the CD11 seat.


9:49PM: Rep. Sires’s BOE slate in West New York swept to victory tonight. 


9:42PM: Millburn Demcrats take control of the Township Committee.


9:40PM: Flemington goes blue: Democrat Councilwoman Betsy Driver appears to have defeated GOP incumbent Phil Greiner for mayor.


9:35PM: In Dover, Alderman Carlos Valencia has won a fourth term.


9:27PM: GOP Rep. Chris Smith has defeated Democratic challenger Josh Welle. 


9:25PM: According to Paterson Times’ live update of the BOE elections, the incumbent commissioners are in the lead.


9:21PM: In Prospect Park, incumbent Mayor Khairullah appears to have easily won re-election tonight over GOP challenger Emma Anderson, 993-350 according to unofficial results (without VBM or provisional). 


9:13PM: Senator and Union County Democratic Chairman Scutari broadened his power base tonight, with sweeps in Cranford, Scotch Plains, and other towns. 


9:11PM: Mayor Diaz’s council ticket lost in Perth Amboy. 


9:10PM: Julia Fahl sprinted to victory tonight to become mayor-elect of Lambertville. 


9:07PM: In North Arlington, Council VP Pronti appears to have won the mayoral contest, according to unofficial results; Pronti was chosen to run after incumbent Mayor Bianchi passed away.


9:05PM: GOP challenger Bob Hugin isn’t ready to concede yet.


8:52PM: Paterson 6th Ward Councilman Al Abdelaziz romped to victory in the special election, winning 4-1.


8:44PM: Incumbent Democratic Senator Menendez has won his bid for re-election against GOP challenger Bob Hugin. 


8:35PM: Meanwhile, at Hugin’s party, the GOP candidate predicted he’ll win, saying ‘the turnout is huge’.


8:31PM: There’s a party-like atmosphere in Hoboken tonight at Senator Menendez’s party – with Governor Murphy and the First Lady already there – as the vote totals begin to pour in. 


8:24PM: The Somerset Board of Elections sought a court order to halt the counting of VBM ballots, due to the overwhelming number received.  A judge halted the counting, which will resume at 9am tomorrow. 


8:06PM: Ocean County VBMs – 

Hugin: 15,469
Menendez:  8,826
MacArthur:  9,681
Kim: 7,143


8:04PM: In Passaic City, BOE member Salim Patel has won the city council seat previously held by the late Councilwoman Zaida Polanco.


8PM: The polls are now officially closed…stay tuned for updates and results!


7:54PM: Bergen County is showing overwhelming turnout.


7:35PM: Millburn VBM totals in CD7 – Malinowski: 1,162; Lance: 349


7:19PM: Hudson preliminary VBMs – Menendez: 3,238; Hugin: 947 and Essex preliminary VBMs – Menendez: 9,334; Hugin: 3,648


6:49PM: Swamping past mid-term precedent, Bayonne hit over 13,500 votes as of 6pm. 


6:35PM: Watch Governor Murphy and Senator Sacco reflect on the Senate race in this Hudson County View video:


6:32PM: According to a source, in Paterson’s 6th Ward, over 4,200 voters have turned out as of 6pm – without VBMs – with a surge in the Lakeview and South Paterson sections. 


6:15PM: In CD3, MacArthur COS Frank Luna says Ocean County turnout is ‘exceeding our expectations‘ while noting lower turnout in areas in Burlington.


6:13PM: Hoboken is on pace to attain record turnout in a midterm election, having hit the 11.5k mark by 2pm. A source says that South Bergen is on pace to hit 60% turnout tonight, and the Bayonne voter turnout has already exceeded that of last year’s gubernatorial election.  


5:40PM: NJ Herald reports that Sussex County is on track to outpace previous voter turnout records. 


5:21PM: Paterson Mayor Sayegh says voter turnout is robust in the Silk City, anticipating as many as 24k votes.  Turnout is strong in the 6th Ward, where his successor Al Abdelaziz is vying for a full term


5:18PM: The Bergen Record’s Herb Jackson reports that $127 million was spent combined on the state’s midterm congressional elections – a new record, besting the former record of $93 million in 2000, when Jon Corzine spent more than $60 million of his own money on his Senate campaign.  Hugin outspent Menendez, $27.7M to $11.2M – and Hugin loaned his campaign an addition $8.5M after October 17th, bringing Hugin’s total  to $36M.  Outside groups spent $19M; $13.2M of that went to either support Menendez or attack Hugin. 


5:01PM: In Essex, turnout is significantly exceeding 2014’s turnout in Newark, confirmed Clerk Durkin, and suburban turnout is also high.


4:51PM: Burlington County Times reports strong early turnout across the county. 


4:49PM: Take a look at Rowan University’s Professor Ben Dworkin’s election day commentary.


4:45PM: A few scenes from the candidates’ and supporters’ social media accounts throughout the day, heading into the final stretch:

 


4:25PM: The Morris County GOP sent out a panicky Election Day email this morning, citing high Democratic turnout and urging Republicans to get out to vote. 


2:48pm: Despite the weather, Hudson and Essex turnout looks to be strong heading into the final stretch – in addition to other key areas.  Cautiously optimistic, DeGise COS Craig Guy said ‘I don’t want to get ahead of myself”, adding that turnout is ‘better than brisk’.  Meanwhile, President Trump tweeted his support for Bob Hugin, saying the GOP candidate would be a ‘great Senator from New Jersey’.


2:15PM: If you have a chance this afternoon (before the final GOTV push), take a listen to the Jersey XYZ podcast episode ‘Century of the Woman’, with host Stathis Theodoropolous and guests Julia Fahl (on the ballot today for Lambertville mayor), Anne Scaiaino, and Rebecca Symes. 


1:58PM: NJ.com details some of the issues voters are facing at the polls today, including confusion over VBMs.


1:45PM: Paterson 6th Ward Councilman Al Abdelaziz campaigns in the rain in the lead-up to tonight’s results; he’s running in a special election for a full-term.


12:31PM: A poll book SNAFU in Passaic County sparked a court challenge; a judge ruled that 7k voters who weren’t allowed to vote due to the error be allowed to vote on voting machines if they have gov’t-issued IDs. 


12:03PM: Millburn – the lone Essex town in CD7 – reported heavy turnout at 10:30am, with 3k votes plus 1,700 VBMs.


11:42AM:  In the marquee race of the season, CD11’s Sherrill and Webber voted at their polling locations, with their families by their side and media following them; Webber says he feels good today, while Sherrill says ‘we’ve done our work’.  Sherrill will encourage canvassers one last time, and Webber has several diner stops throughout the day. 


11:25AM: Middlesex County latest VBM count: 43,237


11:20AM: Governor Murphy splashes down on Newark, campaining with Mayor Baraka. 


10:37AM: CD11 Democratic candidate Mikie Sherrill cast her vote in Montclair. 


10:28AM: A Newark source describes better than average turnout in the South Ward, despite the rain; Essex Clerk Durking says Newark’s vote is ‘surging’.


10:24AM: The Press of AC reports on brisk turnout at South Jersey polling precincts, including a steady stream in Galloway, greatest turnout in Mays Landing, and a line of voters in Northfield at 6am. 


10:16AM: CD5 Democratic Rep. Gottheimer cast his vote in Wyckoff. 


9:50AM: Ocean County Clerk Colabella says VBMs are at a record high in the county, having issued 40.9k as of yesterday.  Colabella also reports high voter turnout in Lacey and Forked River. 


9:42AM: Monmouth Clerk Hanlon reports that out of 42k VBMs issued, 25k have been received back. 


9:41AM: Take a look at NJ Spotlight’s article by Colleen O’Dea on recent VBM law changes and how it could potentially delay returns in close races. 


9:31AM: Eyewitness News reports on the scene in Union City as Senator Menendez and challenger Bob Hugin cast their votes this morning. 


9:27AM: CD11 GOP candidate Assemblyman Jay Webber casts his vote


9:07AM: Senator Singleton says brisk turnout in his portion of CD3.


8:25AM: The scene in Middlesex, the county with highest VBMs, as the counting gets underway.


8:24AM: Voter turnout is strong in Mount Holly, Montclair, and Jersey City.


7:50AM: Jordan Albiez of Union City is ready for the next election day challenge


7:47: AM: A big line to vote in Montclair this morning.


7:20AM: In battleground Somerset County, the Clerk said 18,100 VBMS have been received out of 25,800 sent out: 7,400 Dem, 5,400 GOP, and 5,400 UA.  As of last night, in Essex County, over 21k VBMs have been received, out of the 31k sent out. In Hudson County, nearly 10k have been received.


7AM: Welcome to Insider NJ’s Election Day War Room, where we’ll bring you a real-time synthesis of our coverage – and news and nuggets from around the state during the day.  And of course, we’ll be bringing you results after the polls close at 8pm.  

To even the most grizzled of political veterans and insiders, this past election season has proven to be one of the – if not the most – interesting and consequential cycles, both nationally and in New Jersey. 

One ferocious Senate battle, and twelve congressional races with ten incumbents defending their seats, and two open seats due to the retirements of two GOP Reps., CD11’s Frelinghuysen and CD2’s LoBiondo.  And plenty of municipal, board of education, and county races to watch – plus a few special legislative elections.

But first, to get you started, a little background (and today’s statewide weather forecast).

Take a look at Insider NJ’s original and on-the-ground coverage of the battleground congressional races (and all the others), take a look through the archives of tagged articles focusing on the campaigns and the candidates (click on the blue hyper-linked text), as well as the key points and events over the last two weeks:

The Senate Race: Democratic Senator Bob Menendez vs. GOP candidate Bob Hugin (and several independent candidates, including Libertarian Murray Sabrin and Green Party candidate Madelyn Hoffman)

Bob Hugin, left, the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate race in New Jersey, looks on as New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez, right, the Democrat candidate, answers a question during a debate, Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018, in Newark, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, Pool)

CD1: Democratic Rep. Donald Norcross vs. GOP candidate Paul Dilks

CD2: Democratic candidate Senator Jeff Van Drew vs. GOP candidate Seth Grossman

NJSPBA President Pat Colligan penned a letter of support for Democratic candidate Senator Van Drew.

CD3: GOP Rep. Tom MacArthur vs. Democratic candidate Andy Kim

CD4: GOP Rep. Chris Smith vs. Democratic candidate Josh Welle

  • Governor Murphy headlined a rally for Democratic candidate Josh Welle
  • GOP Rep. Smith endorsed by the Asbury Park Press
  • Welle pounces on a 1972 Smith letter detailing views on homosexuality

CD5: Democratic Rep. Josh Gottheimer vs. GOP candidate John McCann

CD6: Democratic Rep. Frank Pallone vs. GOP candidate Rich Pezzullo

Malinowski

CD7: GOP Rep. Leonard Lance vs. Democratic candidate Tom Malinowski (and Green Party candidate Diane Moxley)

Lance

CD8: Democratic Rep. Albio Sires vs. GOP candidate John Muniz

CD9: Democratic Rep. Bill Pascrell vs. GOP candidate Eric Fisher

CD10: Democratic Rep. Donald Payne vs. GOP candidate Agha Khan

Sherrill.

CD11: Democratic candidate Mikie Sherrill vs. GOP candidate Assemblyman Jay Webber

Webber

CD12: Democratic Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman vs. GOP candidate Daryl Kipnis

Late-game convergences: driven by anti-Trump outrage, and their own organizational interests, Democratic county parties showed increasing enthusiasm and a more robust presence than their GOP counterparts over the GOTV weekend. A source posits that over the past month, President Trump provoked an organizational sea change that has moved the Senate and congressional races in the Democrats’ favor.

Take a look at a few recent columns from Insider NJ on the election:

Take a look at a few of Insider NJ videos from the campaign trail:

Take a look at the NJTV debates of the Senate candidates and congressional candidates in CD3, CD7, and CD11:

And be sure to check out NJTV’s election night broadcast later on tonight:

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