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Press Pool Coverage: Governor Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy Vote Early on June 3


Gov. Phil Murphy, First Lady Tammy Murphy, and their son Sam cast their votes in the 2023 Democratic primary this morning, stopping at their Middletown polling place on the second day of New Jersey’s three-day in-person early voting period.

Voting shortly after the polls opened at 10 a.m., the Murphys were the first voters of the morning at their polling location. The governor said that he’d recently been briefed by Secretary of State Tahesha Way about yesterday’s early voting totals, and he said they’re looking strong.

“It’s going well,” he said. “The numbers are good. They’re better than last year. And knock on wood, we’ve had no glitches.”

Murphy himself was one of the driving forces behind the creation of in-person early voting to begin with, shepherding it through the legislature in early 2021 in preparation for the 2021 general election. This year marks just the second New Jersey primary with an early voting option.

“You never know what the weather’s going to be like on Tuesday; you may be working two or three jobs; a kid gets sick; you’re a senior and you don’t have a ride,” Murphy said. “To be able to come in for three days in addition to Election Day, I think, is a smart, really good thing to do for democracy. And the numbers are showing it.”

Early voting will continue through today and tomorrow before Election Day arrives on Tuesday. Another 209,729 voters have returned their vote-by-mail ballots as of yesterday, with hundreds of thousands more still outstanding (though not all of those ballots will ultimately be cast).

Murphy’s own ballot didn’t feature any contested races, so there’s little question of how he voted. Middletown residents will elect three legislators from the 13th legislative district, two Monmouth County Commissioners, and two township committeemembers this year, but all three contests are likely to be safely Republican, and none have contested Democratic primaries.

In fact, one of the two 13th district Assembly spots on Murphy’s ballot was empty after one of the Democrats who initially filed, Koby Biran, was booted off the ballot for a paperwork error. Monmouth Democrats are trying to get an alternate candidate, Paul Eschelbach, on the general election ballot via write-in votes; Murphy said he did write in a candidate, but did not disclose whom.

Joey Fox

New Jersey Globe