Insiders anticipate that Gov. Phil Murphy as early as today will push back the New Jersey Primary Elections, scheduled for June 2.
The governor is expected to announce a date changed to late June or early July. (June 23rd or July 7th).
Clerks in particular have been eagerly anticipating an announcement by Murphy so they can make processing preparations.
One source told InsiderNJ that Murphy is not expected yet to command an all vote-by-mail election as the state waits to examine the effects of social distancing on the deadly COVID-19 virus. But most county clerks did make that recommendation and recognize it’s still a likely (most hope inevitable) option as the season advances on the new election date.
“Given the current climate, the best solution, I feel, would be an all vote-by-mail election with all registered Democrats and Republicans receiving ballots and unaffilateds only receiving ballots by a vote -by-mail application,” Essex County Clerk Chris Durkin said. “It is a good solution to all the moving parts and complications.”
That said, the Essex clerk said it’s advisable for the governor at this time only to move the date without locking in all VBM.
“He wants to learn more,” said Durkin. “He wants to be guided by the science and the environment. He obviously wants what’s best for the voter. Waiting is prudent – but not waiting too long.”
Again, given the devastation of COVID-19, most sources expect a considerably encouraged all-VBM election even if the governor decides to move the primary to July. Even then, “I think we are going to have issues with polling places and workers [most of whom are older],” said a source.
He added, decrying any announcement that would not include a full plan of attack, “The more we delay a decision, the tougher it will be to implement well.”
Murphy’s updated schedule today (Monday) does not include Secretary of State Tahesha Way:
Governor Phil Murphy – Updated Public Schedule
Monday, April 6, 2020
When: 2:00 p.m.
What: Governor Murphy, U.S. Senator Cory Booker, Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli, Department of Health Communicable Disease Service Medical Director Dr. Edward Lifshitz, State Police Superintendent Colonel Patrick Callahan, and Chief Innovation Officer Beth Noveck to Hold Coronavirus Briefing
Where: George Washington Ballroom, Trenton War Memorial, 1 Memorial Dr., Trenton, NJ
Press: Open, availability
The briefing will be livestreamed on the Governor’s official YouTube channel: