Van Drew Praises Supporters after Winning Congressional Seat

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The room lit up blue as Jeff Van Drew took the stage as Congressman-Elect for the first time, and hundreds came out to the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City to show their support.

“The man works so hard, especially at our level down here in the First District," said R. Bruce Land, Assemblyman. "He doesn’t care what race, what creed, what gender you are, and he doesn’t care what party you are. 

"If you need help, he always works ahead, and I know he’ll do that in Washington. I know he will.”

"I think Jeff set the bar very very high for the rest of us," said John Armato, Assemblyman. "When you can do that and you can cross over the aisle, and get things done — that’s all we can expect.”

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The hours of suspense Tuesday night brought a more anxious feeling to the room, especially with how close the race was in the early stages of counting.

“I think we have a lot of energy in the room, we have a lot of energy in our party, and being close, honestly, in most of these races, I thought they would be," said Eric Scheffler, Sheriff, Atlantic County. "But I feel really good [about] where we’re going and I feel really positive about the outcomes of these races.”

Van Drew declared victory shortly after 10 p.m. on Election Day, and at 10:30 p.m., the Congressman-Elect took the stage to thank his team.

“All of us together, it’s not one person, all of us together did this," said Van Drew as he opened his speech. "And I want to say thank you to each and every one of you, and I will always remember you for the help that you gave me." 

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Van Drew said he would be taking the day off after the elections, but by Thursday, November 8th, he’ll be full swing into getting down to business preparing to join the U.S. Congress.

“Before you can do anything meaningful, you have to try to develop some more bipartisanship to be able to work with Independents and Republicans [who] are in Congress," said Van Drew. "So, I’m really going to reach out and try to make that happen. ... I know some folks say that can’t happen anymore and that Republicans are here and Democrats are here, [but] I want to be an American more than I want to be anything else.”

Van Drew stood confidently as he concluded his speech with a quote that made the crowd stand in applause.

“Some people say we’re going to 'Make America Great Again,'" said Van Drew. "I say America is great and we’re gonna be even greater." 

Van Drew came out on top, 52 percent to 46.2 percent in the race for the Second Congressional District seat against his opponent Seth Grossman.


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