Not a great election for Democrats overall, but the 3rd Congressional District results should make the South Jersey Dems shudder.
Cherry Hill is the only portion of the District in Camden County. That’s John Adler’s home town. Republican Jim Saxton who served the district for more than two decades used to lose Cherry Hill by 16,000 votes.
Jon Runyan only lost it by 4400. That’s astounding. Adler won Cherry Hill two years ago by 10,500. If he had just pulled even with that result he would have won the race because he lost by a total of 6000 votes district wide.
So, basically the Dems did not come out for their guy. Why is that?
Sure it was a Republican year. But maybe that’s an easy excuse. As one Democratic operative said to me ‘Adler was the first guy to endorse Obama for President, and the first guy to abandon him on his signature policy achievement which is health care.’ Both those moves were for political expediency, but then where does it leave your base of supporters? Confused and frustrated and ultimately absent on election day.
Adler also made some curious comments during the campaign. At one point he was asked in a debate about “illegal immigrants,” and in his answer he referred to them as “cheats.” That is the kind of inflammatory rhetoric that doesn’t exactly ingratiate liberals with core constituency groups.
You can’t out-Republican the Republican. And on election day the Dem base let Adler and the South Jersey D’s know that.