Edward Durr, a commercial truck driver for 25 years, unseated in the Nov. 2 election the long-tenured New Jersey Senate president after spending only $153 on the campaign, according to unofficial election results published by New Jersey Herald.
To his surprise, Durr, a Republican, won 52 percent of the votes defeating New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney in the District 3 Senate race. His grassroots campaign included knocking on doors to introduce himself to voters, reported NJ. com.
“The funny thing is, whenever I went around door-to-door, everybody, the first words out of their mouth was ‘Good luck;’ like they knew the political power that was being wielded down here,” Durr, 58, told Fox 29 Philadelphia in an interview.
“We need people who understand the adverse effects of what’s going on in this state,” he said.
“The Senate President has spent 20 years in Trenton,” Durr said in his campaign video. “Higher taxes, increasing debt, and the rising cost of living; we deserve better. New Jersey, it’s time for a change.”
“Let’s end single-party rule,” he added.
— Edward Durr (@edwarddurr1) September 21, 2021
Sweeney, 62, has been the Senate president since 2010 and has served as a New Jersey senator since 2002.
“I believe in God. I am hard-working, trusting, and very loyal. I believe in fiscal responsibility, transparency, and lower taxes,” Durr, who considers himself a “ blue-collar” said in his campaign. He also is a supporter of the 2nd Amendment.
Durr advocated a tax reform claiming that taxes, including property taxes, are a big problem in New Jersey.
“We have taxed the people to the verge of death. Many people have decided to move out of a state they lived in all their life. I feel we must reduce taxes across the board, along with [reducing] government,” the trucker said.
Durr claimed that he spent only $153 on his election campaign, including a purchase of Dunkin’ Donuts for his small team. He raised less than $10,000, according to his campaign finance filings, reported Philly Voice.
Durr’s entire district in Southern New Jersey turned Republican as two Democratic Assemblymen were also defeated by two Republican women in the Nov. 2 election: Bethanne McCarthy Patrick, a firefighter/EMT, and realtor Beth Sawyer, according to unofficial returns for the New Jersey election.
New Jersey Legislative Races
All 120 seats in New Jersey’s Legislature were on the ballot in this year’s election. Many precincts are still expected to report the results of the legislative election.
The unofficial results in districts that completed their reporting at the time of publication showed that Republicans unseated one senator and six assembly members. One vacant seat in the state Senate was also won by a Republican.
Coming into election day, Democrats had controlled the Assembly with 52 seats to Republicans’ 28. In the Senate, Democrats had 25 seats to the Republicans’ 15.
New Jersey’s Legislature consists of 40 districts, which each sends one senator and two assembly members to Trenton, the state’s capital. Assembly members serve two-year terms, while senators serve four-year terms, except for the first election after the census—which comes this year—when they serve two-year terms.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.