In the hotly contested primary for the Democratic nomination to face incumbent 3rd district Congressman Tom MacArthur (R), Delanco’s Fred LaVergne has prevailed over Spring Lake’s Jim Keady.
The race pitted both counties that compose the third congressional district – Burlington and Ocean – against each other, as Burlington backed LaVergne and Ocean backed Keady. Despite Ocean County voters overwhelmingly supporting Keady, with 11,844 votes compared to 3,319 for LaVergne in Ocean County, the owner of Waretown’s Lighthouse Tavern took a beating in Burlington County, where LaVergne got 29,174 votes and Keady got 7,503.
The final total in both counties was 32,493 votes for LaVergne and 19,347 for Keady, 63% to 37%.
Since Burlington has a higher number of registered Democrats compared to Ocean, coupled with the fact that LaVergne had the party line, Keady lost the race, and conceded with a tweet. “We ran the good race & fought the good fight. It was just not enough to overcome the party line in Burlington County,” Keady tweeted.
Mr. LaVergne told Ocean County Politics after his victory that his campaign is moving full steam ahead with their plans for the general election against Tom MacArthur, with further “anti-corruption” efforts to be announced in the future.
Clinton & Trump Win In Ocean County
Hillary Clinton bested Bernie Sanders, with the former secretary of state picking up 19,572 votes compared to the Vermont senator’s 16,305. Donald Trump overwhelmingly won Ocean County, getting 44,672 votes. Despite Mr. Trump being the presumptive Republican nominee, John Kasich picked up 3,741 votes and Ted Cruz earned 2,354 votes among county voters.
Wolff & Cooke Win Democratic Freeholder Primary
On the freeholder front, Michael Cooke and Ed Wolff will be the Democratic nominees to face Republicans Jack Kelly and Ginny Haines along with independent challenger John Novak, the incumbent mayor of Barnegat. Cooke & Wolff bested their four other rivals, claiming 17,092 and 16,370 votes respectively. Second to Cooke and Wolff was Robyn Gedrich and Joni Brennan, who got 10,168 and 9,897 votes each.
Finally, CD3 nominee Fred LaVergne’s down-the-ballot running mates Scott Neuman and Tracy Caprioni placed third, with Neuman getting 2,360 votes and Caprioni earning 2,737. Mr. Neuman said that regardless of the election’s outcome, he plans to continue his lawsuit against the Ocean County Democrats, which questioned the legality of its March convention procedures.