Verona Votes For Sherrill, Webber To Face Off In Congressional Race


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Mikie Sherrill (left) and Jay Webber will face each other in the general election in November.

Verona primary election voters pushed the button for Mikie Sherrill and Jay Webber to be the Democratic and Republican candidates, respectively, in the November election for the 11th congressional district. They were also the choice of voters elsewhere in the 11th, which stretches from Bloomfield to Boonton, and Sherrill, a former Navy helicopter pilot and prosecutor, was just as dominant across the district as she was in Verona.

Sherrill, who was the first of the Democratic candidates to declare last year, swept Verona with 1,095 of the 1,279 votes cast by Democratic voters, according to unofficial results from Verona Town Hall that did not include mail-in ballots. Webber got only 214 of 547 votes cast by Republicans. Webber currently represents Verona as state assemblyman in the 26th state district. The 11th congressional district is a highly contested race for the first time in more than two decades because Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ11) decided in January to not seek reelection.

For the full 11th congressional district, Sherrill had 34,850 votes, or 77.4% of the Democratic ballots cast, according to NJSpotlight.comTamara Harris, a resident in the Claridge House condominiums,  got just 14.5% of the votes district-wide (and 126 votes in Verona), and the other three Democratic challengers–Mitchell CobertAlison Heslin, and Mark Washburne–were only in the single digits district-wide.

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Sherrill and her supporters gathered at the Richfield Regency in Verona on Tuesday night. “Over the last year, the residents across the 11th District have stood up, spoken out, and built a movement and I’m honored to be their nominee,” she said. “I’d like to thank all of the candidates, in particular Tamara Harris, whose advocacy and commitment to the people of this district is unwavering. The results tonight are a clear indication that our community demands new leadership in Congress that will put people over partisan politics and bring change as led by the people of New Jersey. Tonight, we took a pivotal step to make sure we are ready for the tough fight ahead.”

In the full district, Webber got 39.9% of the votes (16,359 votes), after a tight race with Peter De Neufville and Antony Ghee. De Neufville, a self-made businessman, got 30.6% of the votes (12,547 votes) and Ghee, a Wall Street executive who is a major in the U.S. Army reserves, got 21.9% (8,960 votes). Patrick Allocco, and Martin Hewitt got only 8.5% of the vote combined.

Turnout was, again, low in Verona, Only 1,888 of the 10,892 voters came to the polls, or 17.4%. Turnout was highest in District 1 at 23.2% and lowest in District 4 (HBW) at 12.8%. District 1 is primarily Claridge residents, older voters who tend to vote more in state and national races than municipal elections. Democratic votes outnumbered Republican ballots cast in every Verona district.

Poll workers workers reporting in at Town Hall said that there was a fair amount of confusion among voters, many of whom whom did not know that they could only vote according to their party registration in the primary. In a general election such as the one that will take place in November, voters can vote for any candidate regardless of their party registration.

To get ready for November, voters must be registered by October 16 (use this form).  October 30 is the deadline to vote by mail in the general election (use this form). You can also apply in person to the Essex County Clerk until 3 p.m. on the day before the election. You can now vote by mail in New Jersey for any reason. The Essex County Clerk is located at 465 Martin Luther King Blvd., room 247, in Newark. The phone number is (973) 621.4921 or you can email [email protected] Election day is Tuesday, November 6.

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]


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