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Andy Kim sweeps three County Conventions in bid for New Jersey Senate seat

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U.S. Rep. Andy Kim (D-N.J. District 3), aiming for a U.S. Senate seat in New Jersey, secured victories in a series of county conventions over the weekend, marking three consecutive wins against his challenger Tammy Murphy. This success positions him strongly for the Democratic nomination for the Senate.

Kim clinched first place at the Burlington-Hunterdon County Democratic Party convention, held February 24-25, as reported by Politico and Andy Kim’s campaign. His campaign announced that he outperformed his opponent, New Jersey Governor’s wife Tammy Murphy, by scores of 245 to 21 and 120 to 64, respectively. So far, the campaign has won in all three counties that have hosted conventions, including Monmouth.

U.S. Rep. Andy Kim (front row, second from left) sings a hymn with attendees during a service at the Metropolitan Baptist Church in Newark, a Black church, on February 25. [Screen capture from Andy Kim’s Facebook]

The New Jersey Democratic Convention, distinct from the primary election, aims to establish a “county line” on the June primary ballot. Conducted in 19 of New Jersey’s 21 counties, this convention places the top vote-getter at the forefront of the ballot, signaling county support for the candidate. Generally, candidates with more county lines have a better chance of winning the primary.

Despite his convention successes, Kim opposes the concept of county lines. On February 26, he initiated a lawsuit in a New Jersey federal court against the clerks of 19 of the state’s 21 counties, seeking to abolish county lines.

“49 states use fair ballots; it’s time NJ does too,” Kim stated on Facebook. He elaborated, “Currently, NJ allows a few party elites to give their preferred candidates preferential placement on the ballot. This creates a deeply unfair advantage, disenfranchising voters by exerting undue influence and limiting the choice of candidates.”

The lawsuit also includes co-plaintiffs Sarah Schoengood and Carolyn Rush, who are vying for positions as New Jersey’s U.S. representatives.

Meanwhile, party conventions are set to occur in Bergen, Hudson, and Essex counties, among others. Collectively, these counties represent 30 percent of the Democratic electorate in the state, underscoring their significant role within the party.

BY HAEUN LEE, JUNHAN PARK    [lee.haeun@koreadailyny.com]