AC JosepH Media

BRIGANTINE — New Jersey Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday endorsed Amy Kennedy for New Jersey’s Second Congressional District in July 7th‘s Democratic primary.

Murphy’s endorsement comes less than two weeks before the primary, where Kennedy is fighting to win the right to against Republican incumbent Jeff Van Drew in November’s general election.

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Van Drew won the seat nearly two years ago as a Democrat, but made national headlines earlier this year when he switch parties bucking the Democratic House establishment during President Donald Trump’s impeachment.

When Trump came in Wildwood in late January to campaign for Van Drew after the switch, Kennedy was one of several candidates to rallied outside of the Wildwood Convention Center in opposition.

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“South Jersey needs strong and compassionate leaders with integrity and commitment to community,” Murphy said in a statement released by Kennedy’s campaign. “As a former public school teacher and mental health advocate, Amy Kennedy is just the type of leader who’ll bring progressive change to South Jersey.

New Jersey Congressional candidate Amy Kennedy. Photo courtesy of Amy Kennedy for Congress

“She understands the importance of making health care more affordable, expanding mental health services, and fixing our broken political system. I’m thrilled to endorse her candidacy and know she’ll be a strong voice for South Jersey in Congress,” Murphy added.

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It was the second time Murphy weighed in on a big South Jersey race in the upcoming Democratic primary. Last week, Murphy pledged his support for interim Atlantic City Mayor Marty Small Sr. to keep his seat against a strong challenge from Stockton University adjunct professor Pamela Thomas-Fields.

“I am honored to have the endorsement of Gov. Phil Murphy,” Kennedy said. “Time and again Governor Murphy has shown strong and steadfast leadership and has always put the people of New Jersey first. His commitment to environmental protections, justice and education will provide new jobs and opportunities for communities across the state, including here in South Jersey.

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“My family has lived in South Jersey for four generations and I understand the struggles that our families and our communities are facing. As Governor Murphy has demonstrated, leadership matters now more than ever. We need leaders who are committed to serving our community and not themselves.

“As a member of Congress, I will never forget that I am first and foremost a member of the South Jersey community. It would be a privilege to represent and fight for all the people of South Jersey,” she added.

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