Gov. Phil Murphy has been making stops in storm-ravaged towns up and down the state and winning high praise for those efforts. They’re the kinds of events that starve political opponents of oxygen during the weeks leading up to an election.
“Getting new funds, getting emergency relief there, making sure that government is not in the way of the relief but is actually expediting it … to the degree that the governor can do that, there are going to be political benefits because people will see him doing his job and will appreciate that he’s doing it,” said Ben Dworkin, director of the Rowan Institute for Public Policy & Citzenship. But he said, within a few weeks, “We’ll be in the midst of a very competitive campaign in which we’re going to be talking about taxes and affordability and COVID and schools and all the other issues that voters will have at the top of their priority list.”
The campaign of Republican gubernatorial nominee Jack Ciattarelli has limited its activities in recent days to low-key visits with volunteers.