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“Another”Goldman Veteran on Fast Track in New Jersey Governor’s Race

Tax and Spend Democrat Phil Murphy for Governor

More than a year before New Jerseyans choose a replacement for Republican Governor Chris Christie, former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive Philip D. Murphy has lost a major competitor for the Democratic candidacy.

Murphy, 59, who most recently was U.S. ambassador to Germany, secured the endorsement of Senate President Steve Sweeney, a Democrat who announced Thursday that he won’t run for the state’s highest office. On Sept. 28, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, a 39-year-old former investment banker, said that he, too, won’t run, and threw his support behind Murphy.

“The party is coalescing around Phil,” Sweeney said in a Thursday interview. “As a Democrat, I’m going to support Phil Murphy.”

Murphy’s rise parallels that of Jon S. Corzine, 69, the Democrat and onetime Goldman co-chairman whom Murphy has called a friend. Corzine, a multimillionaire who grew up on a farm in Illinois, was elected governor in 2005, declaring in his inaugural address, “Hold me accountable.”

He was defeated for a second term by Christie, 54, who ran on a promise to restore stability as New Jersey plunged into economic recession. Term limits prevent Christie from running for a third term in 2017. He abandoned his presidential campaign in February, became a surrogate and adviser to nominee Donald J. Trump and reached a new low in recent polls as voters disapproved of his handling of state finances.