Fending off a conservative rival and fellow incumbent just two years after he won a surprise victory against the powerful Democratic Senate president, Republican state Sen. Ed Durr defeated his former running mate in Tuesday's primary. On the Democratic side, Sen. Dick Codey, with nearly five decades of legislative experience, won against incumbent Sen. Nia Gill.
Their victories mean they'll be their parties' candidates on the ballot in November.
Durr will face former Assembly member John Burzichelli, who lost along with Senate President Steve Sweeney in 2021. Codey doesn't have a Republican challenger since none have filed to run in that district.
Durr worked as a furniture delivery truck driver when he shocked the state in 2021 by defeating Sweeney, spending a minuscule amount of campaign money compared with other contests.
Durr's victory Tuesday came against Assembly member Beth Sawyer in southern New Jersey's 3rd Legislative District, not far from Philadelphia. Sawyer, a real estate broker, was his running mate in 2021.
In New Jersey, candidates from the same party typically run as part of a joint ticket in their district, even if they’re seeking different seats. As a team in 2021, Durr and Sawyer swept the Democrats who held the Senate seat and two Assembly seats, helping the GOP net seven seats.
Codey's victory came in northern New Jersey's 27th Legislative District. Codey served as governor from November 2004 until January 2006 and has been in the state Senate since 1982. He served in the Assembly from 1974 to 1981.
Gill has been in the Senate since 2002 and was a candidate for Senate president after Sweeney's defeat in 2021, losing her longshot bid to Sen. Nicholas Scutari.
Polls closed at 8 p.m. ET. Results are posted below.
New Jersey State Senate results
New Jersey State Assembly results
Here’s a look at what to expect on election night:
How New Jersey votes
New Jersey’s primaries are limited to party members. However, unaffiliated voters can join a party on election day and vote in that party’s primary.
The AP will declare winners in 10 state Senate primaries and 11 Assembly primaries. In the Assembly races, the top two vote-getters advance to the general election.
First results are expected a few minutes after polls close, and election-night updates are expected to wrap up around 1 a.m. In the 2021 general election, 90% of votes were counted by noon the next day.
The AP does not make projections and will only declare a winner when it’s determined there is no scenario that would allow the trailing candidates to close the gap.
Should a candidate declare victory or offer a concession before the AP calls a race, we will cover newsworthy developments in our reporting. In doing so, we will make clear that the AP has not yet declared a winner and explain why.
New Jersey counts a significant number of votes after election day, which could delay race calls in competitive races. In the 2021 governor’s race, the state counted about 10% of votes after election day. Most of the late-counted votes are mail ballots, which can arrive as late as June 12 if they are postmarked by election day. These votes are more likely to impact the outcome of Democratic primaries because Democrats in New Jersey, like Democrats elsewhere, are more likely to vote by mail than Republicans.
The AP may call a race in which the margin between the top two candidates is 0.5% or less, if we determine the lead is too large for a recount and legal challenge to change the outcome. New Jersey doesn’t have automatic recounts. Trailing candidates can request – and pay for – recounts, regardless of the margin between the top candidates.
As of April 1, there were 6.5 million registered voters in New Jersey, including 2.5 million Democrats and 1.5 million Republicans. As of Monday, 192,694 Democrats and 59,590 Republicans had cast advance votes. In the 2022 general election, 30% of voters cast their ballots before election day.
With no statewide races on the ballot, the AP doesn’t have a statewide turnout projection.
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.