Elections

Former President Obama to visit Newark to campaign for Murphy

ffa7f5e8ec7e4b44342d_ObamainNewark1200x800.jpg
Former President Baraka Obama at Rutgers University-Newark in November 2015 as part of a national tour on criminal justice reform.
ffa7f5e8ec7e4b44342d_ObamainNewark1200x800.jpg

Former U.S. President Barack Obama is scheduled to roll into downtown Newark on Thursday to campaign for the Democratic New Jersey gubernatorial candidate Phil Murphy as the battle to run New Jersey heats up in the race's final weeks. 

Obama's appearance in New Jersey's largest city less than three weeks before the Nov. 7 election on behalf of Murphy is significant for multiple reasons. 

It is a demonstration of political star power, backed by the firepower of Obama's fame and enduring popularity, especially in cities such as Newark. It is evidence of the longstanding professional and personal alliance between Obama and Murphy. And it is also a sign that the contest between Murphy and his Republican rival, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno is directly in the crosshairs of national political observers, who see the Garden State governor's race as part of a referendum on the leadership of GOP President Donald Trump. 

Sign Up for E-News

Obama is no stranger to Newark. The 44th U.S. President pushed for a bipartisan overhaul of the American criminal justice system in a speech at Rutgers-Newark in November 2015. 

Murphy is also no stranger to Newark. The former U.S. Ambassador to Germany and retired Goldman Sachs executive launched his campaign early, in May 2016, campaigning in the state's largest city well before potential rivals, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop or state Senate President Steve Sweeney, had an opportunity to jump into the race. 

Fulop and Sweeney unexpectedly withdrew their names from gubernatorial contention by October, which cleared a path for Murphy among party insiders, who closed ranks around the candidate last fall on the steps in front of the Essex County Historic Courthouse in Newark.

Obama will join Murphy and Democratic Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver, a Newark native, for a canvass kickoff rally at the Robert Treat Hotel in downtown Newark. The historic hotel, owned by prominent Newark real estate developer Miles Berger, has been the site of numerous recent events in support of Murphy, including the victory rally following Murphy's triumph in the June Democratic primary.

Thursday's rally at the Robert Treat will be far from the first time that Obama and Murphy have met. In fact, while few New Jerseyans had heard of Murphy when he announced his run for governor of New Jersey last May, he was already well-known in national Democratic circles. 

In 2006, Murphy was tapped by then-Democratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean to chair the fundraising arm of the national party, where he raised close to $300 million over a three year period, including during Obama's victorious 2008 presidential campaign. 

Murphy was later appointed by Obama as U.S. Ambassador to Germany, where he served from 2009 to 2013. 

Obama will arrive in Newark in the midst of a political firestorm, fueled by an incendiary anti-Murphy TV ad released by the Guadagno campaign last week. 

A group of notable Newark leaders recently spoke out as one to protest the release of the highly negative attack ad slamming Murphy. 

Across the board, all of these major city players, including a pastor and prominent politicians, called out Guadagno, who has served as Gov. Chris Christie's lieutenant governor for almost eight years, for putting out an ad that they found to be extremely offensive and totally unacceptable. 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Newark

Nation’s largest timber office building coming to Bears Riverfront Stadium site in Newark

February 5, 2018

Newark, NJ--Plans to develop the nation’s largest timber office building to be built on Newark's old Bears Riverfront Stadium and adjacent Lincoln motel sites were unveiled Monday by commercial real estate firm Lotus Equity Group.

The 11-story commercial office building, designed by Vancouver-based Michael Green Architecture, will anchor Riverfront Square—an ...

Britnee Timberlake Joins New Jersey General Assembly Replacing Sheila Oliver’s Post

January 30, 2018

Former Freeholder President Britnee Timberlake was sworn in Monday to fill the seat vacated by Sheila Oliver, who became the first black woman to assume statewide office in Garden State history when she became lieutenant governor earlier this month.

Timerlake, an East Orange resident, will represent the 34th District, which ...

Trees Have Sex? Rutgers Researchers Have All the Answers

February 22, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - A few years ago, Rutgers researcher Jennifer Blake-Mahmud was working on a botany project in Virginia when colleagues pointed out a striped maple, a common tree in the understory of mountain forests from Nova Scotia to Georgia. 

 

“They told me, ‘We think it switches sex from year to year, but we don’t know why,’ and I said, ...

Rutgers Union Rally Planned Friday for $15 Minimum Wage

New Brunswick, NJ - On Friday, February 23, student groups, a coalition of Rutgers unions, and representatives from campuses across the nation will hold a rally and march on College Avenue to demand a $15 minimum wage.

The action, initiated by the Rutgers chapter of United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS) and the Rutgers American Association of University Professors - American Federation of ...

Low-Income Families Who Need Safe Cribs Have Nowhere to Go

February 15, 2018

One recent email came from a pastor in East Orange, sharing the struggles of a young couple who have no safe place for their baby to sleep.

Then, there was also a phone call from a Newark hospital, making its fourth request in two years, as well as a frantic text from Puerto Rico, for a family who lost everything in the hurricane.

They all pleaded for the same thing: A safe crib for a ...