Having helped re-elect Kristin Corrado the clerk of Passaic County on Tuesday, the arch-enemy of Assemblyman Scott Rumana (R-40) is making moves toward positioning Corrado for a GOP Primary against Rumana next year, sources say.
Peter Murphy, former chairman of the Passaic County Republican Party, helped engineer Corrado’s 51-49% squeak-out victory over Democratic challenger Jeff Gardner of Hawthorne.
Republican Clerk Corrado received 5,000 more votes than her Republican running mate, freeholder candidate John Capo; and 7,000 more than running mate Claudia Chavez, both of whom went down in defeat to incumbent Democratic freeholders Bruce James and T.J. Best.
Murphy now wants to take the fight to old rival Rumana, sources say.
Rumana fended off Murphy in 2012 when he positioned his county chairman’s candidate, John Traier, for victory over the Murphy-backed Scott Heck.
But those wounds are unhealed apparently, and Corrado now stands poised to – at the very least – pressure Rumana.
Sources close to the assemblyman say he is unruffled by Murphy’s plotting and trusts in his ability to win the lines in the four counties in his district and make a case about how Murphy’s strength is derived in part from deal-making with Democrats – the kiss of death in a GOP Primary.
Sources close to Murphy, however, are emboldened by Corrado’s win, argue that Rumana and Traier are too soft on Dems, and want to parlay the clerk’s success into future victories.