It was all Democrats in South Jersey, from local elections up through the statehouse, as incumbents rode a wave of support for Phil Murphy back into office.
By Matt Skoufalos | November 7, 2017
Camden County turned up for Democratic candidates at every level of government Tuesday, even if it didn’t turn out in numbers, as some 95,683 of 348,779 registered voters (less than a third) showed at the polls.
Another 25,823 voted early or by mail-in ballot, for nearly 35-percent combined voter turnout.
They went overwhelmingly for Democratic nominee Phil Murphy (62,809 votes) over Chris Christie’s Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno (29,004 votes), as Murphy went on to take the rest of the state. The other five balloted candidates pulled in fewer than 1,900 votes cumulatively, with none earning even as many as 700 votes.
All vote totals are unofficial until certified by the Camden County Board of Elections and do not include mail-in ballots.
State, County Races
In the Fifth Legislative District, Democratic State Senator Nilsa Cruz-Perez (14,152 votes) defended her seat from Republican challenger Keith A. Walker (5,164 votes) and independent candidate Mohammad Kabir (239 votes).
In the Fifth District Assembly race, incumbent Democrats Patricia Egan Jones (14,142 votes) and Arthur Barclay (13,085 votes) fended off Republican challengers Teresa Gordon (4,996 votes) and Kevin Ehret (4,798).
In the Sixth District Assembly race, incumbent Democrats Louis Greenwald (29,578 votes) and Pamela Lampitt (28,346 votes) defeated Republican challengers David C. Moy (11,784 votes) and Winston Extavour (11,575 votes) as well as Monica Sohler (586 votes) of the American Solidarity Party.
- In Cherry Hill, incumbent Democratic council members swept the field, returning David Fleischer (9,402 votes), Carolyn Jacobs (8,914 votes), Carole Roskoph (8,829 votes), and Sangeeta Doshi (8,569 votes) to office over Republican challengers Scott Cohen (4,630 votes), Andrew Behrend (4,447 votes), Joseph Rodi, Jr. (4,400 votes), and John Papeika (4,363 votes).
- Meanwhile, in Haddon Heights, New Jersey, Democrat Scott Schreiber (1,261 votes) held off Republican Mike Gatti (971 votes) for an unexpired seat on the borough council, and Democrat Stephanie Madden (1,238 votes) picked up another seat on the local governing body. However, with 4,538 votes cast for the third and final seat on the borough council, incumbent Republican council president Kathy Lange was tied with Democratic challenger Christopher Mrozinski at 1,134 votes apiece. (Republican challenger and retired Haddon Heights Police Chief Richard Kinkler is further behind at 1,032.)
The local Democratic club is claiming victory, as Mrozinski netted 364 mail-in votes to Lange’s 274 and Kinkler’s 248. Haddon Heights last had a race this close in 2015, when Councilman Stephen Berryhill edged challenger Vincent Ceroli after a recount.
- Incumbent Merchantville Democratic Council President Andrew McLoone (550 votes) and council member Katherine Swann (533 votes) faced no opposition on the ballot.
- Neither did incumbent Oaklyn Democratic council members Dot Valianti (706 votes) and Chuck Lehman (703 votes) face any opposition to their re-election.
- Incumbent Pennsauken Mayor Betsy McBride (4,438 votes) and fellow council member Jack Killion (4,97 votes), both Democrats, staved off Republican challenger Vincent Squire (1,059 votes) and independent William Finnegan (876 votes).
School Board Races
- Audubon – Jeffrey Whitman (1060 votes), Pamela Chiaradia (930 votes), and Marianne Brown (882 votes) paced a crowded field, which included incumbent Board President Pat Yacovelli (608 votes) and challengers Cheryl Alvin (599 votes), Matt Repetto (540 votes) and Jessica Di Vietro (476 votes).
- Cherry Hill – Incumbent Cherry Hill Board of Education members Lisa Saidel (5,940 votes), Carol Matlack (5,119 votes), and Eric Goodwin (5,109 votes) defeated challengers Sally Tong (4,356 votes) and Fredrick Dande (3,817 votes).
- Collingswood – In an uncontested race, challenger Kimberly Brooks was the top vote-getter (1,961), with incumbents Fiona Henry (1,910 votes) and Antonina Miller (1,869 votes) returning to office as well.
- Haddonfield – Incumbent Maureen Eyles (2,006 votes) will be joined by challenger Thomas Vecchio (1,699 votes), and fellow incumbent Heather Paoli (1,593 votes) for the next term. The odd men out were Robert Little, III (986 votes) and Glenn R. George (975 votes).
- Haddon Heights – Challengers Amy Lynch (933 votes) and Danielle McKelvey-Teti (898 votes) will join incumbent Jamie Alexander (748 votes) on the school board; Barbara Newell (726 votes), Carrie Rottina (611), and Steve Beckas (459) didn’t make the cut.
- Haddon Township – Kellie Hinkle (1,413 votes), John Kendall (1,355 votes), and Dan Carson (1,290 votes) beat out Kevin Beals (1,259 votes), Craig Roncace (1,160), William Mann (988), and Christopher Cook (822) for three available spots on the local board of education.
- Merchantville – In an uncontested race, Anjali Desai (406 votes) and Craig Nussbaum (401 votes) were added to the local board of education. Write-in candidate Lynn Geddes picked up a third, unfilled seat on the board.
- Oaklyn – The Oaklyn Board of Education race was similarly uncontested, with Therese Marmion (550 votes) retaining her unexpired seat, and Jennifer Cassel (525 votes), Rich Taibi (515 votes), and Colleen Faupel (511 votes) all being returned to office. Write-in candidate Denise Buczko picked up a fifth, unfilled seat on the board.
- Pennsauken – Maria James (2,259 votes) paced the field, followed by Michael Bortnowski (1,906 votes) and incumbent Orlando Viera (1,468 votes); Jay T. Doskis (1,432) and Nhuan Van (1,005 votes) fell short.
New Jersey voters also approved a pair of ballot questions Tuesday.
The “New Jersey Library Construction Bond Act” will borrow $125 million to provide grants “to build, equip, and expand public libraries to increase capacity and serve the public.”
The second question will amend the state constitution to dedicate all money collected from environmental contamination cases to “repair, restore, replace, or preserve the State’s natural resources” or to paying costs incurred by the state in pursuing environmental cases.
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