Multiple Municipal Madhouse: Insider NJ’s Election Day War Room (Updated 10:41PM)

10:41PM: In Ridgewood, incumbent Mayor Susan Knudsen and  Deputy Mayor Michael Sedon won their re-election bids tonight against challengers Janice Willett and Alexandra Harwin.

10:18PM: In Union City, Mayor Brian Stack bumped out over 11,000 votes – besting his 2014 numbers by over 2,000 votes.  

10:02PM: In Medford Lakes Borough in Burlington County, Mayor Thomas Cranston and Deputy Mayor Robert Hanold won re-election tonight. 

9:58PM: While Mayor Baraka cruised to re-election, slatemates Joe McCallum in the West Ward and Lamonica McIver in the Central Ward will both head towards runoff elections

9:52PM: In the battle for the Capitol City, Reed Gusciora and Paul Perez are headed towards a runoff election. 

9:48PM: In Paterson’s council race, Lilissa Mimms, incumbent Maritza Davila, and Flavio Rivera won the three seats.  

9:38PM: In Long Branch, the following council candidates won: Mary Jane CELLI 12.46% 2,479, Lorenzo ‘Bill’ DANGLER 11.84% 2,357, Rose M. WIDDIS 12.38% 2,463, Mario R. VIEIRA 11.57% 2,302, Anita VOOGT 10.49% 2,088

9:33PM: In Paterson’s council-at-large race, it appears newcomer Lilissa Mimms has the edge for one of the three seats.  Incumbent Davila has the second-highest, according to the latest tallies. 

9:28PM: Having beaten challenger O’Donnell, incumbent Davis and allies celebrate in Bayonne. 

9:25PM: In Long Branch, victorious John Pallone won over Adam Schneider 2908-1549 according to the unofficial tally.

9:22PM: On jagged opposing sides with Senator Loretta Weinberg, incumbent Mohammed Hameeduddin won tonight in Teaneck, as did his picks for Council.  One of Weinberg’s won, while the other three she backed lost.  

9:19PM: Incumbent Mayor Wayne Levante, and two other incumbent councilmemners, lost in Newton tonight, as newcomers Matt Dickson and Jason Schlaffer, along with incumbent Susan Diglio, won. 

9:09PM: A special edition of Insider NJ’s Who’s Up And Who’s Down: Election Night Aftermath

9:03PM: In Ocean City’s mayoral election, incumbent Jay Gillian emerged victorious over challenger John Flood, a former council president, beating him almost 2-1, by 2023-1162.  The council incumbents all ran unopposed (and, obviously, won)

8:53PM: Andre Sayegh has won the mayoralty in Paterson, successfully building a coalition to get him over the finish line.  Critically, he bumped out a 1600 vote margin in South Paterson, but did well across the board, holding a 3000 vote margin of victory with just 14 districts remaining.

8:50PM: Running unopposed in Irvington, incumbent Mayor Tony Vauss secured re-election tonight. 

8:47PM: Challenger Jason O’Donnell is conceding to incumbent Jimmy Davis. 

8:42PM: In Long Branch, it’s a landslide win for challenger Councilman John Pallone over incumbent Mayor Adam Schneider. 

8:40PM: In Belleville, former Councilman Mike Melham beat incumbent Ray Kimble

8:39PM: In Keansburg, Jim Cocuzza and Judy Ferraro will win two council seats

8:36PM: In Bayonne,  Mayor Davis is heads to a re-election victory, garnering the 50% plus one to avoid a runoff

8:34PM: In Long Branch, the early districts show challenger John Pallone crushing incumbent Adam Schneider and beating him 2-1 in VBMs 

8:31PM: In Newark’s East Ward, Anthony Campos and incumbent Augusto Amador are headed towards a one-on-one runoff election; Newark Mayor Baraka crushed challenger Gayle Chaneyfield-Jenkins 


7:29PM: The Arab community in South Paterson – homebase of Sayegh – looks to squeeze every last vote possible amid Riverside overdrive, the heart of the Dominican community and Mendez base, where Jay Rahman reports that the majority of voters appear to be going for Mendez and that turnout is ‘much higher’ than four years ago, according to a poll worker.  

7:01PM: In Paterson, Rodriguez hauls the most VBMs, sending a shockwave through allies of Mendez and Sayegh.  The word tremored through Sayegh world to get every loose body out to the polls in the last hour. For the moment, with time ticking down, Rodriguez could claim a victory on a critical – but not final – front.

6:16PM: In Paterson, Alex Mendez says he’s kept his base in tact, as a key polling location in the 3rd Ward sees brisk turnout.  Mendez must contend with a potentially base-sawing Rodriguez – who’s working out of the same HQ as Joey Torres in 2014.  

5:06PM: In full-bore GOTV mode, Campos and Fonseca workers storm the doors in the East Ward, as low voter turnout – around 3,700 – gives incumbent Amador an edge.  ‘If the numbers start getting crazy after 5 p.m., then we have a problem’ says a source.  

4:54PM: In Paterson, Sayegh votes at School #25, feeling confident heading into tonight’s results.  The buzz on the street is that Rodriguez may have done just enough to saw into Mendez’s Dominican-American base to give Sayegh the edge.  


4:40PM: Team O’Donnell canvassers hit the streets in Bayonne for the afternoon push

2:26PM: In Trenton, there may not be a winner tonight – if no candidate reaches the 50% threshold – but we’ll know who’s out – according to Jay Lassiter’s mid-day Trenton dispatch.  “Here in Trenton, it’s block by block”, said Reed Gusciora, who feels confident heading towards tonight’s outcome.  Walker Worthy’s spokesman Dan Knitzer says ‘so far we think turnout looks good. We got out the districts we need so far.’

2:18PM: In Bayonne, some predictable issues at the polls, as turnout is expected to be ‘pretty good‘, as candidate Jason O’Donnell put it.  

12:54PM: Sources say the Board of Elections is on pace to reject around 300 of the 3,542 Paterson mail-in-ballots.  MIBs are a critical part of Mendez’s campaign strategy.  Elections Board Chairman Currie says it’s likely to be closer to 200. 

11:40AM: In Paterson, there are exactly 6,072 mail-in-ballots sent and 3,542 ballots returned as of late afternoon yesterday, per this report by Paterson Times’ Jay Rahman, which says the VBMs the ‘invisible 7th Ward’ which some speculate may decide the election.  Candidate Bill McKoy says “we did not run a mail shop. We have no projection on that. These guys are running vote by mail factories. In many ways illegally. I refuse to participate in it.”  Mendez, Rodriguez, and Sayegh are each expected to get north of 1,000 VBM votes each. 

11:14AM: In Bayonne, incumbent Mayor Jimmy Davis and challenger Jason O’Donnell both voted early this morning and expressed confidence in tonight’s outcome, as per this report by Hudson County View’s John Heinis.  

11:01AM: Paterson GOP (yes, they exist) Committeeman Collazo questions the Mail-In-Ballot process (there are over 6000 out there, with 2800 returned as of Saturday), and takes aim at one ballot in particular – Rep. Bill Pascrell’s.

10:46AM: At the center of the firestorm over the racist flier that landed in Paterson over the weekend, Jesus Castro tells Insider NJ he had nothing to do with it – and blamed allies of Sayegh for slandering him.  Watch below:

9:35AM: In Paterson, a source considers the race’s local implications beyond tonight’s results.  Meanwhile, in South Paterson in the 6th Ward – Sayegh’s homebase – Al Abdelaziz gets out the vote among the Arab community.  It’s a war, and its close, he says of today’s election.  

8:59AM: It’s a perfect spring morning in Long Branch, as voters head to the polls to decide between incumbent Schneider and challenger Pallone or challenger Grant.  Read Jay Lassiter’s Long Branch dispatch from the Jersey Shore and the campaign headquarters size up the race: from Mitch Seim on Team Pallone: “Turn out is crazy high right now. By 10AM turnout may exceed the entire turn out from four years ago!”  From Andrew Trenk on Team Schneider: “Pallone dumped so much money into attack ads and it pissed people off. People know there’s an election going on.”

8:48AM: Which municipal election ultimately has the most statewide significance?  Vote here.  

12:00AM: Welcome to Election Day, and welcome to Insider NJ’s Multiple Municipal Madhouse Election Day War Room, where we’ll house the steady stream of election information and updates that will flow in from cities around the state.  To get started, catch up on what you may have missed with the municipal recaps below (hint: if you hover your mouse over the bold blue textthe major articles about those races will pop-up).  

First, here’s a great primer: Insider NJ Guide to Tuesday’s May 8th Elections, and don’t forget to read A Special InsiderNJ Pre-May 8th Election Day Edition of Who’s Up and Who’s Down and see where the power players wagered their political capital in today’s elections.  Take a look at a few videos from the various municipalities throughout the campaign season in Insider NJ’s Video Gallery.  Polls are open, New Jersey, from 6am to 8pm.


In addition to the below, there are non-partisan elections today as well in Teterboro (where five incumbents are running unopposed), Ridgewood (where Mayor Knudsen and the deputy mayor are facing a challenge), Orange (where four council seats are up), Ocean City, (where incumbent Jay Gillian faces a challenge from former Council President John Flood), and Weehawken (where incumbent Richard Turner is running unopposed), Irvinton, Keansburg, Medford Lake Borough, and Pine Valley.  


Paterson (read all the coverage of Paterson's epic mayoral battle):

Trenton (read all the coverage of Trenton’s too-tough-to-call mayoral race):

Bayonne (read all the coverage of Bayonne's mayoral duel between Mayor Davis and former Assemblyman O’Donnell):


Long Branch:

Union City (read more coverage involving Mayor Stack and the dynamics of Hudson County's intra-party war)

  • Mayor/Senator hounded the HCDO at his Election eve rally, saying ‘its called keeping your promises when you make a promise’ and ‘its about helping people’.
  • Unopposed – but not to be outworked – Mayor Stack began his GOTV activities over the weekend, looking to demonstrate massive local power ahead of a HCDO chair battle and ahead of the 2019 county executive race.
  • Stack held a massive rally two weeks ago in support of his ‘Union City First’ slate





  • The candidates head into today’s election on opposing jagged sides, as a proxy war between hometown Senator Weinberg and Mayor Hammeduddin, with the two backing some of the same candidates, and some opposing ones.


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