Talks are going on right now in Mercer County, as Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-15) attempts to shore up home county support toward a U.S. Congressional run.
She needs to start by solidifying Mercer and convincing powerful Mercer County Executive Brian J. Hughes that the Central Jersey county needs to coalesce behind a woman.
“These guys all want diversity until there’s an open seat of power,” an operative cracked.
The Assemblywoman from Ewing also wants to try to wrench NJEA, CWA and Carpenters Union support into her corner – if possible.
Fellow longtime labor champion state Sen. Linda Greenstein (D-14) of Middlesex County is making those same phone calls on her end, where her ally, rising star new party chairman Middlesex Boss Kevin McCabe, is confronting his first test as leader of a party organization once ruled by John Lynch.
Then there’s Union County, where the party chairman, Assemblyman Jerry Green (D-22), said he’s curious about a Plainfield-Trenton political partnership.
In the starkest ethnic terms, CD12 numbers about 200,000 advantage Democrat white voters.
Sources allied with Watson Coleman want to build on a base of 34,281 African American strong D registered voters in the 12th District, mostly concentrated in Plainfield and Trenton. They hope Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (D-17), who will appeal to a base of 18,649 CD12 Indians, can peel suburban support away from Greenstein as they put the two cities into Watson Coleman overdrive.
They recognize that it will not be easy work against Greenstein – the most battle-tested politician in New Jersey.
The other question is where do the groups representing the district’s 32,000 Latino voters go?