CD-6 Primary: It will all come down to turnout

On the day Anna Little won the endorsement of the Middlesex County GOP, she became the favorite to win the 6th congressional district nomination.  Despite that all of the candidates, Democrat and Republican are from Monmouth County, the new 6th is a Middlesex County district. 

With no presidential contest on the top of the ballot and the U.S. Senate race uncompetitive, turnout is likely to be very low.  13,000 voters decided the 2010 primary race between Little and Monmouth County GOP Vice Chair Diane Gooch by less than 90 votes.  This time out, I’ll be surprised if there are more than 6000 votes.

Based on name recognition, Little should be considered the favorite.  She scored an upset in the last primary. She was the general election candidate in 2010 and she was a countywide candidate for Freeholder in 2006.

Coming into the race, Ernesto Cullari, the Monmouth County GOP endorsed candidate was a complete unknown, except for readers of the triCityNews where he was the token conservative columnist.   The nomination in both Middlesex and Monmouth Counties was his for the taking because no one else wanted it.  Little was running for the U.S. Senate nomination against Joe Kyrillos.

Little has been once again running against the Republican establishment who turned her away for the congressional nomination twice and never wanted her as freeholder candidate.  She won the office of Freeholder by one vote at a raucous January 2006 convention and was denied the nomination for reelection in 2007.

But it was during a meeting with Kyrillos in early March, before the Monmouth County screening/candidate selection and after Cullari announced his candidacy, that Little give up her Senate bid and decided to make another run for Congress.   Kyrillos did not want a primary challenge from the pesky Little.  Little did not want her career to end with a primary loss to Kyrillos.   The independent minded elected officials and municipal chairs of the Monmouth GOP were not going along with the deal.  They knew Little was no more of a threat to Kyrillos than Badar Qarmout.

Despite her anti-establishment rhetoric, Little relied on establishment support to secure the Middlesex GOP line. Kyrillos prevailed on Middlesex GOP Chair Sam Thompson to support Little in securing the line in order to keep her from changing her mind again an running for Senate.

Having secured Middlesex, the deck was stacked for Little and cleared for Kyrillos.

Ernesto Cullari didn’t get the memo.   If he did, he didn’t care.  He set out to win.  He just might.

Unlike Diane Gooch in 2010 who ignored Little and ran the primary race as a prelude to a general election race against the author of ObamaCare, Congressman Frank Pallone, Cullari has run his campaign against Little.

Little has run with the Gooch strategy…count on the history of primary voters voting the line and ignore her opponent.  Cullari has taken the race to Little and has run a superior campaign. He’s been attacking her record as mayor of Highlands and the record of her legal career.

Cullari has raised the money necessary to get his ads on television.  His GOTV robo calls are more frequent than Little’s. With the Tea Parties divided with infighting, neither campaign has the ground game that Little had in 2010, Little has relied on emails, facebook and left over campaign materials from 2010.

The Cullari campaign is counting on Monmouth Republicans coming out tomorrow in greater numbers than Middlesex Republicans who are not used to their votes making a difference in the end result.  The Little campaign is hoping to win 1 of 4 Monmouth votes, thinking that she will prevail with a significant Middlesex turnout if that happens. 



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Posted: June 4th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: 2012 Congressional Races, Anna Little, Diane Gooch, Frank Pallone, Joe Kyrillos, Middlesex County Republicans, Monmouth County Republican Committee, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

12 Comments on “CD-6 Primary: It will all come down to turnout”

  1. So Club Monmouth Wants Cullari said at 10:50 am on June 4th, 2012:

    So the entrenched, well organized, well financed Monmouth GOP wants Cullari. Is this the same Monmouth GOP that has brought us Operation Bid Rig (of various phases), Brookdale Community College financial abuses, Pension abuses at the Sheriff’s Department, and employee abuses at the Parks Department???

    Is this the same Monmouth GOP that REFUSES to say this is/was wrong??? Sounds to me its time for a change.

    This is one sick and tired REPUBLICAN that wants change–and now!

    Given the choices–although I do prefer another–I am going with Anna.

  2. Justified Right said at 11:23 am on June 4th, 2012:

    Art a few years back I did the work of counting up the votes from previous elections and found CD-6 to be about 55/45 in favor of Monmouth over Middlesex.

    How do you know it now favors Middlesex since redistricting? Is that based upon registrations?

    What does it look like now regarding registered Dems/Repubs?

  3. brian said at 11:32 am on June 4th, 2012:

    So another year of Pallone by double digits—–YAWN

  4. LittleCantBeatPallone said at 2:09 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    The bottom line if that Little Cant beat Pallone! Its that simple!
    So, all the Little supporters can waste their time, effort, money, etc etc etc if they want to, but that is what will happen. She lost big time against Pallone, and if it wasnt for the Tea Party folks she wouldnt have even won the primary, or came as close as she did in the general election. She even lost her own town to Pallone!
    Now the Little dirt is out there, her support has all but vanished except for the remaining Little zealots, she doesnt have the support of Republicans in her own county, she no longer has the initiative, doesnt have the funds, and the list goes on.
    Everyone getting the picture? So, for all those that want to support an unpopular, trouble making, back stabbing loser, God bless ya all!
    At least with a fresh new face like Cullari, there would be a fighting chance at beating Pallone. With Little there is no chance. Pallone will be more than ready for her this time, and she will suffer from the same lack of support from Monmouth Republicans she did last time. Loss to Pallone guaranteed!
    If this was a horse race, Id rather support the new one, than one I know has three lame legs!

  5. TR said at 3:42 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Really this is pointless neither one can beat Pallone and this sideshow is just a distraction.

    More interesting is the Chairmans race.

  6. Races said at 4:07 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Cullari / Little is the Republican equivalent of the Gopal / LaRocca battle…

  7. Eric said at 5:42 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Joe Rullo will sweep Ocean County, and win the state due to low turnout. Mark my word!

  8. ThenWhyBother said at 5:43 pm on June 4th, 2012:


    If It doesnt really matter, and neither can beat Pallone………..then why does anyone care or bother? Or why did you bother to even post about it here, if it really doesnt matter and no one cares, and no one can beat Pallone?
    I know……….. Lets not have any candidate run on the Republican side and let Pallone just stay as long as he wants and do whatever he wants.
    The real problem is Republican apathy, Vs. the fact that Democrats will come out and vote in swarms for the Democrat candidate no matter who they are. They could run Beelzebub, and Hitler and the Democrats would still come out to vote for them with the same numbers as every other election.
    Why cant anyone beat Pallone? Easy, Democrats always vote, Republicans vote when they feel like it, if the weather is good that day, and nothing good happens to be on TV!

  9. Freespeaker1976 said at 6:23 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Eric said at 5:42 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Joe Rullo will sweep Ocean County, and win the state due to low turnout. Mark my word!


  10. Rick Ambrosia said at 6:45 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    @thenwhybother….I think Hitler was a republican…and I know that Beelzabub is, so no, I wouldn’t vote for them…but I bet you have.

  11. TR said at 7:37 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    I did not say nobody can beat Pallone I said neither of these two candidates can. Is there is some perfect candidate who could? Maybe. The problem is demographics favor Pallone this year. Put your resources where they have the best chance of making a difference.

  12. Vic said at 8:46 pm on June 4th, 2012:

    Tell it like it is… Anna was a plant in the Senate race, by Kyrillos, to keep a real conservative out of the race. The Steve Lonegan, if you will, to Bret Schundler back in the 2005 primary for Governor… and then she got back doored by Kyrillos in the end.