Governor Phil Murphy won yesterday’s Democratic Gubernatorial primary election. Though unopposed, his win in the Democratic primary is an important step toward reelection for the pro-public education governor. Since taking office nearly four years ago, Gov. Murphy has kept his policy promises and constantly worked with educators to restore respect to the profession that his predecessor worked tirelessly to erode.

Republican and former Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli won the Republic Primary and will challenge Gov. Murphy during this November’s general election. Ciattarelli refused to meet with the NJEA Political Action Committee (PAC) during the primary campaign, essentially forgoing the chance of endorsement.

NJEA members stepped up in a big way during this primary election. Volunteers hosted meetings around the state and made more than 1000 phone calls to teachers and all public-school employees to remind their fellow members just how consequential Gov. Murphy’s first term has been for educators. In targeted races around the state, NJEA member-volunteers made phone calls, sent text messages, and knocked on doors to ensure NJEA-endorsed candidates won their respective races.

The efforts of those dedicated members paid off; NJEA-endorsed candidates saw big successes across the state during Tuesday’s primary election.

In LD 16, Assemblyman and NJEA-endorsed candidate Andrew Zwicker won the Democratic nomination to run for State Senate. NJEA-endorsed candidate Assemblyman Roy Freiman won his bid to run for reelection.

In LD 20, Senator and NJEA-endorsed candidate Joe Cryan won the Democratic primary election to run for State Senate. Assembly candidates Assemblywoman Quijano and Rev. Atkins, both having earned NJEA’s endorsement during the primary, won their respective Democratic primaries and will move to the general election.

In LD 26, Assemblywoman and NJEA-endorsed candidate, Betty Lou DeCroce, lost her bid in the primary to be the Republican candidate in the general election.

All candidates worked hard to earn the endorsement of educators; each of the endorsed candidates expressed their deep understanding of the vital role that educators play in a community. Each endorsed candidate demonstrated his or her commitment to work with educators to solve the most challenging problems facing public education today.

NJEA PAC Operating Committee, the committee that makes NJEA endorsements, will meet again in early August to review the screening of candidates and make official endorsements for this Fall’s general election.

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