While Assemblyman Nick Chiaravalloti and Assemblywoman Angela McKnight faced game opponents in their first re-election bid in the 31st Legislative District, they cruised to victory today.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
McKnight, the top vote getter in the primary, fought through several negative mailers paid for by the New Jersey Education Association – who endorsed Chiaravalloti and challenger Kristen Zadroga Hart - embracing her role as a charter school board member while standing up to one of the state’s most powerful unions.
As of 9 p.m., unofficial tallies with about 75 percent of the vote in showed that McKnight racked up 6,852 votes.
The NJEA went after McKnight for her voting record, claiming she hurt school funding in LD-31, as well as her ties to Better Education for NJ Kids – a super PAC linked to charter school advocates David Tepper and Shelley Skinner.
However, it made no difference at the end of the day, as the incumbent won in definitive fashion.
Chiaravalloti, a former state director for U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), powered through a sexting scandal plaguing Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis and also pulled out all the stops by having U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) do a robocall yesterday (h/t InsiderNJ).
Although he also faced some criticism for not bringing more school funding to LD-31, the incumbent from the Peninsula City, who same politicos called vulnerable leading up to today, had no problem finding support at the polls.
Also as of 9p.m., Chiaravalloti was right behind his running mate with 6,637 votes with about 75 percent of the vote tallied.
Hart, a veteran operative for the Jersey City Education Association, suffers a tough loss after running a full-fledged campaign since March, notching 3,204 votes with 3/4 of the machine votes counted.
Her running mate, Bayonne Board of Education Trustee Christopher Munoz, came in last place, totaling 2,089 with around 75 percent of the machine votes counted.