1989 New Jersey gubernatorial election
County results key:
|Elections in New Jersey|
The 1989 New Jersey gubernatorial election was a race for Governor of New Jersey held on November 7, 1989. Incumbent Republican Governor Thomas Kean was term-limited having been elected to served two consecutive terms. Democrat James Florio, a U.S. Representative from the 1st district and a two-time unsuccessful candidate for Governor, defeated 12th district Republican Representative Jim Courter in a 24-point landslide. Until 2017, this is the last time Somerset County went for a Democratic candidate for governor.
Primary elections for the Republican and Democratic parties were held on Tuesday June 6, 1989.
- Tom Blomquist, retired Coast Guard captain
- Gerald Cardinale, State Senator
- Jim Courter, U.S. Representative
- W. Cary Edwards, New Jersey Attorney General
- William Gormley, State Senator
- Chuck Hardwick, Speaker of the General Assembly
- James A. Kolyer, industrial arts teacher
- Lois Rand, former head of the New Jersey Small Business Administration
|Republican||W. Cary Edwards||85,313||21.29|
|Republican||James A. Kolyer||1,963||0.51|
- James Florio, U.S. Representative
- Alan Karcher, former Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly
- Barbara Boggs Sigmund, Mayor of Princeton and former Mercer County Freeholder
|Democratic||Barbara Boggs Sigmund||61,033||16.53|
Major party candidates
- Jim Courter, Republican, U.S. Representative
- James Florio, Democratic, U.S. Representative
Other independent candidates
- Tom Fuscaldo, One Eye On, owner of a television antenna business
- Daniel M. Karlan, Libertarian, computer programmer
- Catherine Renee Sedwick, Socialist Workers
- Michael Ziruolo, Better Affordable Government, trucking consultant
Florio, who had run in the Democratic primary for Governor in 1977 and lost in an extremely close general election in 1981 to outgoing Governor Thomas Kean, stressed in this campaign that he would govern closer to Kean than the conservative Congressman Courter and that despite the economic growth under Kean and the Reagan administrations, he would lead an active government to combat potential overdevelopment and pollution. Following a Supreme Court ruling that would allow states to impose regulations on abortions, the pro-choice Florio won the votes of those in favor of abortion rights while Courter who comprised an anti-abortion voting record in Congress sought to moderate his views which led to distrust among voters. To moderate his positions, Florio promised a wider use of the state death penalty for drug crimes and not to raise taxes (the latter promise would be broken in 1990 when he signed a $2.8-billion tax increase which would lead to his 1993 defeat).
|Libertarian||Daniel M. Karlan||11,878||0.53%|
|Socialist Workers||Catherine Renee Sedwick||6,197||0.28%|
|Democratic gain from Republican||Swing|
- Saffron, Inga (May 16, 1989). "With Tough Odds, 3 Gop Hopefuls Rely On Ideas Instead Of Connections". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- "Candidates for the Office of Governor - State of New Jersey - Primary Election" (PDF). Secretary of State of New Jersey. 1989. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Sullivan, Joseph F. (November 5, 1989). "4 Who Say They Are New Jersey Alternatives". The New York Times. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Kerr, Peter (November 8, 1993). "THE 1989 ELECTIONS: Governor-Elect MAN IN THE NEWS: James Joseph Florio; Careful and Determined". The New York Times. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Apple, Jr., R. W. (November 9, 1989). "The 1989 Elections: The Abortion Question Backlash at the Polls; Major Setbacks Prompt G.O.P. Debate About Lessons for Future Candidates". The New York Times. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Paolantonia, S. A. (October 4, 1989). "Statewide Poll Shows Abortion Issue Hurting Courter". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Paolantonia, S. A. (June 7, 1989). "Top N.j. Race To Match Florio And Courter". The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- Brownstein, Ronald (November 1, 1993). "Voters Seem Dissatisfied, Uncertain on Election Eve : Campaigns: Gubernatorial, mayoral posts at stake. No sweeping winds of change gauged in off-year races". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
- "Candidates for the Office of Governor – State of New Jersey -- General Election" (PDF). Secretary of State of New Jersey. 1989. Retrieved June 16, 2015.