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U.S. Rep. Jefferson Van Drew’s (R-2) defection from the Democratic Party prompted outrage and sadness among Democrats and wide open arms among Republicans.
The South Jersey Congressman became a Republican sooner than vote to impeach President Donald J. Trump, then welcomed the Republican President to Wildwood for a rally.
Now, self-proclaimed Democratic socialist Bernie Sanders, a senator from Vermont, appears on pace to land the nomination is his party for president, or at least force a bloody brokered convention.
This week, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) expressed worry for the occupants of Democratic congressional districts in New Jersey in the event that Sanders becomes the party nominee. U.S. Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-5) – who unlike Van Drew backed Trump’s impeachment – likewise questioned the appearance of Sanders’ “burn the house down” grassroots progressive campaign.
Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26), co chair of Trump’s reelection campaign in New Jersey, said Democrats look too splintered to survive.
“I can’t see anyone rescuing this party,” Pennacchio added of the Democrats. “They’re going so far off the cliff.
“One of two things will happen,” he added. “Either they splinter into two separate parties – like Teddy Roosevelt and the Bull Moose Party – or the party itself remains splintered.”
He sees the fracture lasting for a generation.
A Democratic Party source in the Legislature gearing up for today’s budget address by Governor Phil Murphy, wrote off the cycle for his party.
The Democratic Party can only keep imploding before it heals, the source said.
Can that happen in time for this current election cycle?
No, the source said.
It hurts now.
But “It’s healthy in the long run for younger leadership to rise through the ranks,” the souce said. “The elders have lost the meaning of what our party is about.”
The source added with an exclamation point, on the heels of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’s blow-out Nevada victory, “Write off year. What an embarrassment.”
In light of all the volatility in the Democratic Party, here’s the InsiderNJ poll question of the day: