Casagrande Strikes Back!

casagrande-cropBy Caroline Casagrande, also published in the October 6, 2011 edition of the triCityNews

Elections are about choices. And this year you have a clear choice: do you want to continue the new path of fiscal responsibility that started in 2009 with the election of Chris Christie, or go back to the bad old days?

My name is Caroline Casagrande and I’m running for the Assembly in the 11th Legislative District, along with my friends Senator Jennifer Beck and Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini. I’ve served parts of Monmouth County in the Legislature since 2008.

I believe we are the best candidates to represent you and keep us on the path to fiscal responsibility. Making New Jersey affordable for families and businesses, creating jobs,  and restoring faith in a government which had become a punchline for late-night comedians is something that affects everyone, regardless of your gender, religion, or sexual orientation.

Those are the things I’ve been focused on since being elected four years ago and those are things I will focus on if I am re-elected.

Dan has given me this space to introduce myself to you. I thought I’d use the opportunity to set the record straight, then tell you a little about myself in my own words, rather than you hearing about me from someone who’s constantly hyperventilating.

Dan had been attacking me lately for, in his view, not taking a position on gay marriage. What I’ve said is I’m not going to speculate on hypothetical legislation. On issues like this, it’s easy to be for or against something in theory, but the details are the difference. That’s the approach I take on every bill I vote on- show me the details.  Unfortunately, in the black and white, Keith Olbermann- Sean Hannity world we live in, this approach is now seen as a moral failing.

Of course, being lectured on political cowardice by Dan is the ultimate irony. This is the same person who was voted out of office after only one term after voting for the massive $2.8 billion Florio tax hikes in 1990, because he caved when pressure was put on him by the Trenton Democrats.  It’s easy to understand why Dan would want to talk about other issues with that hanging around his neck.

In this difficult economic environment, people want leaders with the courage to cut spending, reduce the size of government, and get out of the pockets of businesses and families who can’t afford to pay any more. On those issues, the differences between us are clear: I’ve been a fierce advocate for them, and Dan voted for the largest tax increase in state history.

Let me explain a little about myself and why I’m so concerned about the direction of our state. I was born and raised in Monmouth County and I am currently raising my own family here with my husband Steve and our two young sons, Harrison and Teddy. I graduated from Red Bank Catholic, Penn State University and received my law degree from Rutgers. I am on the Board of Trustees of the Girl Scouts of Monmouth County and the Visiting Nurses Association.

In 2007, I  decided to run for the General Assembly because runaway property tax increases (and tax increases of every other kind) were making New Jersey unaffordable for many families and businesses.

I come from a close-knit family. I want my parents to stay in New Jersey. I want my brothers and sisters to be able to afford to live here so my kids can hang out with their cousins. Government shouldn’t be taxing and spending to the point of breaking up families, but that’s what was happening. New Jersey was on the brink of financial disaster and no one seemed to care.

For example, in 2007 the Democrat controlled Legislature passed a $33.5 billion budget, capping a five year span where they raised the budget, $10 BILLION. That’s 50%! In just 5 years! Rather than do something crazy, like maybe spend less money, Governor Corzine was considering selling the Garden State Parkway and the New Jersey Turnpike.

Since 2009 with the election of Governor Christie, we have been able to start to undo the bad economic policies of the past that lead to tens of thousands of people and jobs fleeing our state. We have begun to restore fiscal sanity to our state and create private-sector jobs.

Last spring I voted for bi-partisan reform of the state’s pension and benefits system that will save taxpayers $120 billion over the next 30 years, and preserved the retirements for thousands of workers.

I voted to enact the 2% municipal cap legislation that forces local governments to live within its means and helps stabilize property taxes.

I have made it a point to root out arrogant and wasteful spending of your tax dollars.  I’m leading the fight to forbid public employees from cashing in any unused sick and vacation time. I changed the law this year to increase penalties on people committing Medicaid fraud.

I created a web site www.stopgovernmentwastenj.com,  for public workers to report waste, such as the fact the state used to waste $3.2 million per year on unused phone lines.

I will continue to fight for taxpayers and look for more ways to reduce the size and cost of government. Unlike my opponents, I will never support job-killing tax increases and will work to find bi-partisan solutions to the challenges facing our state. I hope I have earned your support on the issues that matter most to working families.

 To learn more about our campaign, please visit www.team11nj.com


Posted: October 6th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Caroline Casagrande, Dan Jacobson, Legislature, NJ State Legislature, Uncategorized | Tags: , , | 27 Comments »

27 Comments on “Casagrande Strikes Back!”

  1. Justified Right said at 2:57 pm on October 6th, 2011:

    Assume legislation that allows gays to marry with any church being allowed to opt out of performing or recognizing the ceremonies.

    Would Caroline be for or against that legislation.

    I really want to know (sincerely – no joke).

    About 90 people who vote on Gay issues alone in Asbury Park want to know too.

    Beyond that…

  2. Freespeaker1976 said at 3:12 pm on October 6th, 2011:




    Forgive the shouting, but that’s all I want to hear about in this race. Everything else is just a distraction.

  3. Phil Perspective said at 9:52 pm on October 6th, 2011:

    Justified Right:
    I never understood that. Meaning your marriage at the local courthouse(or local registrar) is different from the one at your local church. After all, the Catholic Church doesn’t recognize divorce. And I don’t hear the Church trying to lobby the state legislature, or any state legislature, to outlaw that.

  4. Resident said at 10:48 pm on October 6th, 2011:

    Great job on sharing your record. We miss you in Ld-12 but know that you will continue to fight for the taxpayers in NJ no matter what district you represent.

  5. LiberalResident said at 11:56 pm on October 6th, 2011:

    I’m a Democrat, wow was that powerful! Forget the State Assembly Caroline, we need you in Washington!

  6. Justified Right said at 11:40 am on October 7th, 2011:


    I think the church just wants to maintain for marriage the same opt out privileges they have for divorce.

    The state allows people to divorce now, and the church is not forced to recognize it. That is why you can’t get remarried in a church after a civil divorce – according to the church you are still married.

    The church just wants the opportunity to not recognize a civil ceremony between same sex couples.

    Seem reasonable. Everyone gets what they want.

    The church does have to be careful about lobbying for legal changes because it could affect their IRS status, so you won’t see them too often going after divorce laws to change them.

    However, they do lobby from a religious perspective. For instance, about 10 or so years ago the Pope stated that all American lawyers who are Catholic must stop taking divorce cases.

  7. JerryW45 said at 1:38 pm on October 7th, 2011:

    Well, one out of three good legislators is a start. Will someone please challange Beck & Angelini next time around?

  8. Papist said at 5:09 pm on October 7th, 2011:

    Phil Perspective, who told you that the Catholic Church does not recognize civil divorce? The Catholic Church not only tolerates civil divorce, the Church recognizes the necessity of civil divorce laws. To wit:

    Paragraph # 2383 of The Catechism of the Catholic Church

  9. Voter said at 6:04 pm on October 7th, 2011:

    I just voted for Caroline Casagrande this afternoon. (I will be working on election day so I voted by mail-in ballot.) I also voted for Ray Santiago and Vin Gopal.

    Incidentally, thank you Assemblywoman Casagrande for respecting my Second Amendment rights. I know that Santiago and Gopal are not fans of the Second Amendment, but then again, neither are Beck & Angelini. I voted for the Democrats because I am embarrassed to be represented by Jennifer Beck and Mary Pat Angelini.

    Sneaky Politics Gets One-Gun-A-Month Bill Passed in NJ

    Mary Pat Angelini: “New Jersey teens will do more drugs because we legalized medical marijuana.” (What was Mary Pat smoking?)

    Jennifer Beck voted in favor of the law mentioned in the following article:

    New Jersey Forces Pharmacists to Dispense Abortifacient Drugs Regardless of Conscience”

  10. Jorge said at 11:32 pm on October 7th, 2011:

    Big House!!!

  11. Good for you, said at 9:17 am on October 8th, 2011:

    Caroline.. folks, here is a lady young voters can look up to and emulate: for so many young professionals with families, who were either brought up here, or have moved to Monmouth County for our quality of life, and are trying to work hard, raise their kids here, and be able to afford to stay here, it’s great to see the youngest “mom” in our assembly helping them to do that.. she’s also a fine role model for young women of the conservative political persuasion to strive to be like, as well- am proud of ya!.. from, your “birthday twin”!..

  12. Anotehr voter said at 9:18 am on October 8th, 2011:

    Who cares about jobs, taxes, spending, budgets?? Just tell us about the gays, Caroline, focus on the important things!

  13. Get a life, Jorge! said at 9:18 am on October 8th, 2011:

    not funny or cool!…

  14. Freespeaker1976 said at 8:02 pm on October 9th, 2011:

    Can’t wait for the election season to be over. Perhaps the trolls will disappear.

  15. me either.. said at 9:46 am on October 10th, 2011:

    but, then, with the upcoming Presdential, this is child’s play, compared to the nonsense we’ll get, 24/7, from the first Primary, til the bitter end..in reality, it has gotten so personal and idiotic over the past few years, one now wonders if the best system in the world will actually survive..

  16. Kraut said at 2:47 pm on October 10th, 2011:

    And how do you define the term troll? Anyone that disagrees with your opinion?

  17. Rick Ambrosia said at 4:13 pm on October 10th, 2011:

    That’s exactly right Kraut. Freeloader1976 doesn’t like people that disagree with him one bit. They’re all trolls if they don’t drink the kool aid.

  18. Freespeaker1976 said at 6:15 pm on October 10th, 2011:

    Ya Know Rick..

    I backed off you for a few days, but you STILL find ways to make personal attacks. You just can’t help yourself you little smurf, can you?

    I’m still waiting for you to take up my offer to give me a call so that I can shred you by phone as I don’t want to waste people’s time here. But, I guess you’re nothing but a chicken hawk.

    As to the definition of trolls, go look it up. on the internet. I’m not doing your work for you. However, last I remember that definition fits Ambrosia as well.

    Rick, knock it off and I’ll do the same.

  19. Jim Sage said at 11:03 pm on October 10th, 2011:

    Caroline, As you may be aware by now, I posted the below information on the “Stop Government Waste” site. Can I get an update on this matter? I did forward this to your running mate Jennifer Beck, but she refuses to get back to me via phone and/or e-mail. And as you also know, she refused to answer my question regarding this matter at the Manalapan Library where you were present.

    Here is the information I posted:

  20. TR said at 8:13 am on October 11th, 2011:

    Caroline, Ignore sour grape nut jobs.

  21. Freespeaker1976 said at 8:43 am on October 11th, 2011:


    Is that horse dead yet, you know; the one you have been beating ad infinitum?


    Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

    State Deficit, State Spending

    Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

    State Deficit, State Spending

  22. Rick Ambrosia said at 9:00 am on October 11th, 2011:

    Maybe I would take you more seriously if you started using your real name Freeloader1976. I have no intention of “backing off” when your comments are basically anonymous. Grow a set and back your comments with a name…get some skin in the game…so to speak. Until then, I will keep hounding you until you man up. Oh, yeah…”Troll” really refers to ANONYMOUS posters….sound familiar Freeloader?

  23. Jim Sage said at 10:02 am on October 11th, 2011:

    Freespeaker, you would be surprised at the nashing of teeth this article does to people. No one from your party–MY PARTY–has said this was wrong. When are you going to get it. Why has Golden been silent on this matter? (no pun intended).

    When I exposed that his former undersheriff, now current media relations officer had a take home car and lived 4 miles down the street, I found this repulsive–especially in light that 10% of the correction officers were laid off. Again, not a damn peep.

    I truly believe this man may need a primary challenge in the future. This man (Golden) has failed to uphold the law, and ethical standards within the sheriffs department.

    Didn’t he run on a platform of fiscal austerity with Tom Arnone and Bob Clifton??? In the future, they or anyone else better stand clear of him.

    Primary challenge…hmmmmm

  24. Not Holding My Breath said at 10:36 am on October 11th, 2011:

    Speaking of government waste, when can we expect Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande to criticize the disability pension that Assemblyman David Rible is receiving? Oh, that’s right. Rible, like Casagrande, is a Republican. Silly me.

    New Jersey – Assemblyman David Rible – Scams State Board for Disability – “totally and permanently disabled” man competes in 5- mile run and has gym membership.

  25. Jim Sage said at 11:20 am on October 11th, 2011:

    If the past predicts the future…not one of our legislators will say anything.

    During Operation Bid-Rig (including phases 1,2, 3); Brookdale (with the exception of Curley and Mallet); The Parks System, and now The Sheriff’s Department–DO NOT expect Jennifer, Caroline, or Declan to say a word.

    FreeSpeaker keeps hitting on “state spending” Well, isn’t spending for fraud a “state spending” issue? Isn’t the placement of a high ranking sheriff’s officer in a fictitious position a “state spending” issue???

    FreeSpeaker repeat after me: It was wrong for Caroline, Declan, and Jennifer, to not speak against fraud at the sheriff’s department. It was further wrong of Jennifer Beck to lie about me and tell people that the investigation is over–it’s not!

    Now, I guess certain people will write negative things for speaking the truth.



  26. Freespeaker1976 said at 4:53 pm on October 12th, 2011:


    IF THERE WAS SOMETHING THERE ILLEGAL, it would have been handled.

    NOTHING wrong was done. Could things be changed? Sure, but right now; it’s


  27. Joe said at 8:20 pm on October 16th, 2011:

    As someone who has chatted with Caroline Casagrande on several occasions and attended school with her siblings, I can say she is an intelligent person with powerful energy. This makes me very surprised and disappointed that she continues to dodge an issue like marriage equality, one that most certainly affects our economy (it is well known that states who support marriage equality experience an immediate economic boost, something much needed in New Jersey during this tough economy). Her empty response to this issue belittles the very principles she aims to maintain. Should it turn out that we disagree on this issue, I would still consider giving her my vote; however, I cannot in good conscience support her in this or any election until she can offer a more clear stance on this topic. I know others are coming from the same place as me. It saddens me, as I do believe she has political potential.