Early returns in Monmouth County show record turnout at the polls in both Republican and Democratic districts, a pace exceeding 2008.
Very Republican districts are outperforming 2008 totals, when John McCain defeated Barack Obama in the Republican-leaning county while losing nationwide.
Democrats won countywide that year, and like their GOP counterparts, they are registering higher turnout than 2008 in Democratic Party towns like Asbury Park and Long Branch.
The county sets the scene this year for a classic clash between Republican County Chairman Shaun Golden (who’s also on the ballot for sheriff) and Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal, who’s fielded a full slate of countywide candidates, including Marlboro Twp. Committeeman Jeff Cantor for sheriff.