A Bergen County source told InsiderNJ this evening that Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-37) will run with the following two candidates for the Assembly in a Democratic Primary:
Councilwoman Lauren Dayton of Tenafly
Councilwoman Gervonn Rice of Teaneck
The source griped about the larger story: namely the failure of the party establishment in Bergen to prevent the primary.
Vainieri Huttle is running for the senate seat being vacated at the end of the year by retiring senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg (D-37).
The assemblywoman’s slate mate, Assemblyman Gordon Johnson (D-37), is also running for the seat, with the tacit backing of the establishment coalesced around sitting Bergen County Democratic Committee Chairman Paul Juliano.
“Juliano really messed this up,” the source groaned, in reference to the thumbs up for Johnson.
A not ready for prime time vibe abided.
She fired off a letter to BCDO Chairman Juliano, saying she ‘will not allow a predetermined outcome to shape the future’ of the district, adding that the ‘decks had been stacked in favor of my opponent’ (Assemblyman Gordon Johnson). Accusing Juliano of ‘pulling strings behind the scenes’, the Assemblywoman alleged that some elected officials ‘have been forced to endorse Gordon Johnson’.
Huttle has a Zoom press conference scheduled for tomorrow for a ‘special announcement’ with ‘special guests’.
Those guests are reportedly Rice and Dayton.
“I write to respectfully inform you that I will not be participating in the Bergen County Democratic Convention on March 15th. I am running for State Senate in the June primary,” the assemblywoman wrote. “I will not allow a predetermined outcome to shape the future of District 37. I will fight for a true democratic process that ensures the voices of the thousands of people in District 37 are truly heard.”