JERSEY CITY – Standing in a crescent of TV cameras, news media hounds and Hudson street drift, an insider watched Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop gracefully descend the stone City Hall steps, and shuddered with a visible show of discomfort that could best be described as dread.
“This is where it happened,” the insider groaned, observing, almost hopelessly, the entourage of police brass settle in on Fulop’s flanks behind the podium in preparation for the news conference.
“This is where Fulop endorsed Phil Murphy for governor,” the source muttered, by way of explanation.
It was true.
Fulop at this spot last fall announced his intentions to back out of the governor’s race and instead pursue a local reelection bid.
“He would have won,” the insider told InsiderNJ, dismayed by Murphy’s 24% support among Democrats, according to last month’s Fairleigh Dickinson University Poll, and keeping an anxious eye on the Republican Primary.
“If [Jack] Ciattarelli gets through, he will be tough,” the insider said, a reference to the Republican assemblyman pursing a gubernatorial bid on the GOP side against front-runner Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno.
To be fair, Murphy blows away the rest of the Democratic Party field in the primary and Ciattarelli appears to be a long-shot at best in his primary polls.