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Congressional District 11, like two years ago, again is shaping up as one of the most pivotal in the state, if not the nation.
When Mikie Sherrill won the district in 2018, it exemplified how moderate Republicans and suburban women (the groups certainly overlap) turned against the Republican party of Donald Trump.
Now it’s 2020 (already) and the question is, will that surge repeat itself? Was it an anomaly – like Democrats winning a few Morris County offices during Watergate – or was it a sign of a far-reaching changing political landscape?
People who think they know are just guessing.
But it is interesting, up to a point at least, to look at voter registration figures. And they show that Democrats are steadily gaining.
The state Secretary of State’s office releases registration figures every month. A year ago, the GOP advantage in the 11th District was about 5,000 voters.
Now it’s about 1,300, according to the February figures. Democrats have been gaining ground drip-by-drip every month, a trend that suggests they may outnumber Republicans by the time November rolls around.
One can make too much of voter registration figures; people still have to actually vote. But it seems safe to assume that the 3,700 or so additional district Democrats who registered as such in the last year didn’t do so to vote Republican
None of this is secret information. In response, Morris Republicans have stepped up voter registration efforts.
And it’s not surprising that a recent missive from the Morris County Republican Committee features a photo of Nancy Pelosi ripping up the president’s State of the Union address.
It expresses disgust at the act and urges supporters to react by providing the GOP with “money, time and resources.”
Looping together Districts 11 and 7 (where Tom Malinowski resides), the notification called Republican hopefuls Rosemary Becchi and Thomas H. Kean Jr. “two phenomenal candidates” who are running “to unseat the Democrats who stole our congressional seats back in 2018.”
You really can’t beat over-the-top political rhetoric.