Andy Kim picks up major endorsement in New Jersey’s U.S. Senate race, at Tammy Murphy’s expense

Jersey City mayor and 2025 gubernatorial candidate Steven Fulop withdrew support from Tammy Murphy, giving it to U.S. Rep. Andy Kim instead.

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Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., speaks to voters in Jersey City, New Jersey, on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024.

Rep. Andy Kim, D-N.J., speaks to voters in Jersey City, New Jersey, on Friday, Feb. 23, 2024. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)

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New Jersey gubernatorial candidate Steven Fulop has switched his support from first lady Tammy Murphy to U.S. Rep. Andy Kim for the hotly contested Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate.

Fulop, the mayor of Jersey City, issued a statement Monday morning announcing the shift in his support.

“It’s no secret I’ve been disappointed with the campaign and how it has been conducted,” Fulop said, describing himself as an early supporter of Murphy. “It’s clear to me that I was wrong with my early support and endorsement of Tammy Murphy for Senate.”

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The shift in support to Kim comes as Camden County Democrats endorsed Murphy at their convention on Saturday, but not without controversy. Kim and fellow candidate Patricia Campos Medina were locked out of the convention.

By Sunday afternoon, Fulop expressed his disappointment with what happened and the lack of a response from the Murphy campaign over the incident.

Fulop endorsing Murphy was right at the time given his position and his city, according to Micah Rasmussen, director of the Rebovich Institute for New Jersey Politics at Rider University, who adds that Fulop was not alone in the assessment.

“Now, after hearing from his constituents and watching the campaign play out, he has figured out that the opposite has proved to be the case,” said Rasmussen.

Rasmussen added that Fulop switching candidates would have an effect in Hudson County, where the county organization has already endorsed her. But Dr. Ben Dworkin, director of the Institute for Public Policy and Citizenship at Rowan University, said it’s unclear how it will affect turnout.

“This switch might endear him a bit more to the progressive wing of the Democratic party but a week is a lifetime in politics,” said Fulop. “We are still many, many weeks from the gubernatorial primary in 2025.  A lot can change in the days to come.”

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Kim has a slight edge in the number of county Democratic organizations that have endorsed his candidacy, with nine counties. With the exception of Sussex County, Kim has earned the coveted spot on the ballot known as “the line.”

In addition to Hudson, Murphy has the endorsement of seven county organizations, but they are largely the more populous counties in North Jersey. Currently, Camden County is her only party endorsement from South Jersey.

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