Andy Kim’s Actions Rattle New Jersey Democratic Power Structure

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( – Representative Andy Kim, a Democrat from New Jersey, is making waves in the New Jersey political arena. The congressman’s surprise move to run for Senate is being called “rebellious and insurgent.” He secured a top placement on the state’s ballot when the people of Monmouth County chose him over Tammy Murphy, wife of Governor Phil Murphy.

Tammy Murphy announced her decision to leave the race saying she is not willing to wage “a very divisive and negative campaign” which she believes would be required if she were to continue. Incumbent Senator Bob Menendez has also dropped his bid for the Democratic nomination saying he will possibly run as an independent if he is cleared of bribery charges and acting as a foreign agent.

Kim has filed a lawsuit in an attempt to change the New Jersey county line ballot system. Currently, the candidates that a county’s Democratic party endorses are listed strategically to be more easily found on the ballot while other candidates may be harder to locate. A recent study by Julia Sass Rubis indicates receiving the county-line endorsement does significantly increase a candidate’s chances of winning the primary. Not all counties determine which candidate to endorse in the same way. Kim’s lawsuit claims the county line system is unconstitutional.

For now, Kim has to play by the current rules and has the endorsement of nine counties. He plans to continue moving forward with the lawsuit stating that he does not want to participate in the current system. A spokesman for Murphy dismissed the lawsuit as a “sad, hypocritical stunt.” Shockingly, the New Jersey Democratic attorney general declared his office would no longer defend the county line system in court and agreed the practice is unconstitutional.

Kim faces two other candidates but is expected to win the nomination. The people of New Jersey have watched the corruption surrounding Menendez and seem to welcome Kim’s anti-corruption campaign.

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