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Republican truck driver for furniture store who reportedly spent only $153 on his campaign is poised to unseat powerful Democratic NJ Senate president

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Image source: Twitter video screenshot via @edwarddurr1

One hundred and fifty-three dollars.

Reportedly that's all truck driver Edward Durr spent on his New Jersey state Senate campaign — $66.64 to buy food and drinks for staff and $86.67 for paper flyers and business cards, according to WCAU-TV.

Yet Durr — a 58-year-old Republican who drives for furniture store Raymour & Flanigan and has never held political office — on Wednesday led powerful Democratic state Senate President Steve Sweeney by about 2,000 votes, Politico reported.

The outlet noted that Sweeney has helmed the state Senate for a dozen years and is the second most powerful official in New Jersey government.

"I have no idea what's going on. I am really trying to grasp all of this," an overwhelmed Durr told WTXF-TV early Wednesday morning outside his south Jersey home. "I knew it would be a major upset."

Durr is facing off against Sweeney in the 3rd Legislative District, which includes parts of Gloucester, Cumberland, and Salem counties, Politico said, adding that Durr lost a 2019 bid for the Assembly.

"I kept telling myself and telling people I was going to do it, but in the back of my mind I was like, 'You know, how am I going to beat the Senate president?'" he told the outlet.

But Durr noted to Politico that he started thinking he could have a chance as he sat with his family in his living room Tuesday night.

"My daughter was sitting next to me," he recounted to the outlet Wednesday morning. "She laughed at me and said, 'Dad, you've got tears running down my face.'"

Durr is a lifelong resident of the Garden State with three children and six grandchildren, and NJ.com said there was "little fanfare" when he announced his candidacy in early 2021.

More from NJ.com:

He compared his quest in challenging Sweeney to restoring a rusted, broken down 1964 Mustang that's sitting on bald tires in his front yard. Like the car, New Jersey had good bones and a strong foundation. "What it requires now is someone to show it a little TLC," Durr said.

He built his bare-bones campaign at the grassroots level, walking door-to-door throughout the district, wearing jeans and tennis shoes and introducing himself to voters. In ads, Durr is hopping down from his commercial-grade truck or revving the engine on his motorcycle, appearing like the quintessential suburban dad -- and in stark contrast to Sweeney, often besuited and photographed over lecterns in the state capital.

Politico said for this election there has been a high turnout in districts with large blue-collar populations, and they've been pulling the levers for Republicans like mad.

"I've said this before: I'm as blue-collar as you're ever going to find," Durr added to WTXF.

He also pointed out to Politico the problems he's seen with the current regime.

"You have the debacle of unemployment. The masking of the kids in school. You have Senator Sweeney trying to take away people's medical freedom rights," Durr added to Politico. "I think the perfect storm was that he stepped into a pile of you-know-what and couldn't get out of it because he didn't know which way to turn. I just tapped into the right focus."

He also told the outlet that he views himself as a "constitutional conservative" who's in favor of cutting taxes (income, corporate, and other state taxes) to help "businesses to grow" and reducing property taxes. Durr also wants abortion stopped and favors a law that would outlaw it if a fetal heartbeat is detected, Politico added.

Plus, he's a big Second Amendment backer who said in a recent YouTube interview that running into roadblocks getting a concealed carry permit spurred him to run for office, the outlet reported.

Anything else?

According to NJ.com, the state's Senate Democrats were scheduled to pick new caucus leadership on Thursday, but Sweeney postponed the meeting.

"Due to the closeness of several State Senate elections, the Leadership Caucus scheduled for tomorrow will be delayed," Sweeney said, according to the outlet. "The Caucus will be rescheduled once the result of every Senate election is determined."

Should Durr prevail, NJ.com said it would prove "one of the most unthinkable upsets in New Jersey political history."

Here's a campaign clip from Durr:

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