On campaign trail with Christie, Sen. Tom Kean predicts GOP will take N.J. Senate


New Jersey state Senator Tom Kean said he believes Republicans will take the State Senate in next week’s elections.


“We’ve got extraordinary candidates. I think you can see we’ve been outraising [Senate President] Steve Sweeney the first three-quarters of this year and we’ve been on a very positive offensive message, focusing on how we can make the state more affordable,” Kean said Thursday during a campaign stop at Ponzio’s Diner in Cherry Hill.

Sweeney and the Democrats currently hold a solid majority in the Senate. The Republicans would need a net gain of four seats to tie and five to take control.

While all 120 seats in the state Legislature are at stake, only six races are considered competitive.

Kean was riding the campaign along with Governor Chris Christie, who is touring the state in advance of next week’s vote.

The governor got a warm welcome at the diner from his supporters and surprised patrons.

Circling the restaurant as the cameras clicked, an effusive Christie gave out hugs. He leaned over to ask a toddler how his french fries were, said the boy’s mother, Beth Pfaff.

“He’s getting over being sick this morning and all he was asking for was ‘french fries, french fries,’ so we had to run some errands this morning [and I] said i’ll take you to Ponzio’s,” she said.

Analysts predict Christie will win his bid for re-election in a landslide over Democratic challenger, state Sen. Barbara Buono.

New Jersey voters also will be asked if the state should raise the minimum wage and whether veterans organizations should be able to use part of the money raised through games of chance for their operations.


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