Phil Murphy and Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno claimed their party’s nominations for governor.
Victories by the front runners sets up a five-month showdown until November’s general election. Here’s a look at the two candidates and where they stand on key issues.
Kim Guadagno, Republican
Record State House reporter Dustin Racioppi and political columnist Charles Stile interview GOP gubernatorial hopeful Kim Guadagno at a diner in Eatontown on May 22, 2017
John C. Ensslin
Name: Kim Guadagno (pronounced Gwa-don-no)
Hometown: Monmouth Beach
Family: Husband, Michael, and children Kevin, 24; Michael, 21; and Anderson, 16.
Education: Political science degree from Ursinus College, 1980; law degree from American University, 1983.
Prior Experience: Lieutenant governor, 2010-present; Monmouth County Sheriff 2007-2010; Monmouth Beach commissioner, 2005-2007; assistant state attorney general, 1999-2001; assistant United States attorney for district of New Jersey, 1991-1999; United States Organized Crime Strike Force in Brooklyn,1988-1991.
Property taxes: Guadagno says lowering property tax bill is her No. 1 priority. She has proposed a property tax “circuit breaker” that would provide relief to middle-class homeowners. It would cap the school portion of a property tax bill at 5 percent of a household’s income, with a maximum limit of $3,000 in savings. The plan has been widely criticized because it relies on about $1.5 billion in savings and revenue growth at a time when the state is struggling to meet its modest revenue projections. Guadagno says she will make tax relief a priority and find the money.
Where she stands
Taxes: Opposes all tax increases.
School Funding: Favors restructuring the school-funding formula. Says extra money going to over-funded school districts should be redirected to property tax relief, which would prompt a legal challenge. Guadagno says she wants one, because it would require creating a “full, fleshed-out record” so political leaders can “find out what the facts are.”
Marijuana: Favors decriminalizing marijuana but is opposed to legalizing it for recreational use.
A profile of the Republican candidate for New Jersey governor.
Michael V. Pettigano / NorthJersey.com
Phil Murphy, Democrat
Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Phil Murphy sits down with Charlie Stile and Dustin Racioppi of The Record and NorthJersey.com at the Princetonian Diner. Tuesday, May 23, 2017
Kevin R. Wexler/NorthJersey.com
Family: Wife, Tammy, and children Josh, 19; Emma, 17; Charlie, 15; and Sam, 13.
Education: Economics degree from Harvard University, 1979; masters of business administration from Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, 1983.
Prior Experience: U.S. ambassador to Germany, 2009 to 2013; Democratic National Committee finance chairman, 2006-2009; retired from Goldman Sachs in 2003; chaired New Jersey Benefits Task Force, 2005; board member NAACP, 180 Turning Lives Around, 2nd Floor teen helpline; founder policy organizations New Start New Jersey and New Way for New Jersey.
Public bank: Murphy has proposed that New Jersey becomes the second state in the nation to run a bank. North Dakota established its bank a century ago. Murphy’s intention is to use the bank as a lending house for low-interest loans to students, businesses and municipalities. That money would then be reinvested in the state rather than companies that have no obligation to spend it here. Murphy’s plan has many skeptics, including bankers, who chiefly worry that a state bank would remove liquidity from struggling community banks.
Clean energy: Murphy aims to transition New Jersey to 100 percent clean energy by 2050. He proposes doing so by rejoining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, prioritizing and expanding solar energy, using offshore wind and increasing funding and incentives for energy efficiency.
Where he stands
Taxes: He has said that “everything’s on the table,” but has committed to raising taxes on high-income earners and taxing the sale of marijuana if it is legalized. He has also said he’s open to considering a special tax dedicated to NJ Transit.
School Funding: Fully fund the formula established under Democratic Gov. Jon Corzine.
Marijuana: Legalize for recreational use with sales taxed by state.
A profile of the Democratic candidate for New Jersey governor.
Michael V. Pettigano / NorthJersey.com
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