Bayshore Tea Party Group co-founder Barbara Gonzalez told HuffPost that her group has nearly 1000 members and that they are staunch supporters of former Highlands Mayor Anna Little’s quest to unseat Congressman Frank Pallone, in an article posted last evening.
“If you don’t get someone in who is totally willing to fight the establishment, it will never change,” Gonzalez told HuffPost.
Little lost to Pallone in 2010 and 2012 with BTPG’s support, but Gonzalez thinks it will be different this year.
Gonzalez said her membership roll has grown by “a couple of dozen new members” since earlier this month when the Bridgegate controversy broke.
BTPG ran primary challenges to Monmouth GOP back candidates in 2010, 2012 and 2013. Little is the only candidate backed by the group to ever win a primary, which she did in 2010 and 2012. Yet Little, a former Monmouth County freeholder has not won a general election since her association with Gonzalez and the BTPG. Prior to that association, Little was undefeated in four general elections.
The 2013 primary in which BTPG backed former Pallone challenger Leigh-Ann Bellew and a slate of candidates that no one can remember against Senator Joe Kyrillos, Assembly Members Amy Hanlon and Declan O”Scanlon, Freeholders Tom Arnoe and Serena DiMaso and Sheriff Shaun Golden, will be remembered for a rogue 4am robo call that purported to be from the Kyrillos, Handlin and O’Scanlon campaign. Bob Gordon, the other co-founder of BTPG, denied that the group had any involvement in the call and denounced it a reprehensible. Kyrillos placed the blame or the call on the Bellew campaign, a separate entity from BTPG. The Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office launched an investigation into the call. The Prosecutor’s spokesperson, Charles Webster would not comment on the progress of the investigation when questioned by MMM last week.
The Monmouth GOP is girding for an internal battle over its freeholder nominations to be determined at the March 22 convention, as Howell Councilman Bob Walsh is preparing a challenge to incumbent Freeholders Lillian Burry and Gary Rich. The party would be wise to prepare for a local and congressional primary challenge as well.