The Associated Press has declared Republican Rep. Jeff Van Drew victorious in his battle against Amy Kennedy for New Jersey's 2nd Congressional District.

Van Drew had declared victory on Election Day but Kennedy did not concede that night saying outstanding votes still needed to be counted.

At last count, Van Drew had just over 159,000 votes compared to around 144,000 for Kennedy. About 5,000 votes were cast for other candidates.

Van Drew gained national attention when he left the Democratic Party late last year. His flip brought President Donald Trump to Wildwood in January for a rally that was attended by thousands of people.

The AP notes this was Kennedy's first run at public office but her efforts were greatly aided by a backing in the primary from Gov. Phil Murphy.

According to NJspotlight.com, a Monmouth University poll in October had Kennedy at 49% to Van Drew’s 44%, which was just outside of the poll’s margin of error. Stockton University’s recent survey had Kennedy ahead by one point.

Overall, Gov. Murphy says over 4 million people voted in this election, setting a new record.

New Jersey's 2nd District covers all or portions of Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland, Salem, Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, and Ocean Counties. NJspotlight.com reports the district has nearly 20,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans but unaffiliated voters exceed both parties’ totals.

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