Monmouth Democrats threaten to sue over the Middletown High School North story

Snapshot 2 (5-26-2016 10-48 AM)For the second time in less than a month, the Monmouth County Democrats have threatened to sue MoreMonmouthMusings.

Earlier this month Maggie Moran, former Governor Corzine’s campaign manager and Deputy Chief of Staff and the wife of Belmar Mayor “Lawless Matt” Doherty threatened to take legal action against us if we did not correct or retract a story wherein we claimed she worked for Ashbritt, the company that made millions cleaning up the Jersey Shore after Hurricane Sandy and the company Belmar hired after Dirty Doherty fired a local clean up contractor.  We responded by publishing her lawyer’s letter and proof that Maggie worked on behalf of Ashbritt, in the form of marketing materials with Maggie’s name and phone number on it.

Yesterday, Monmouth County Democrat Chairman Vin Gopal, threatened to sue, not about something we wrote, but about something we might write.

Screenshot of Surrogate Candidate Vincent Solomeno's facebook post about campaigning in Middletown High School North. MMM has reduced the size of the photo to protect the identity of the students.

Screenshot of Surrogate Candidate Vincent Solomeno’s facebook post about campaigning in Middletown High School North. MMM has reduced the size of the photo to protect the identity of the students.

Goofy Gopal and the Middletown Schools administration are circling their wagons over the story we broke on Saturday morning about the Democrat Surrogate and Freeholder candidates campaigning in a Middletown High School North honors Government, Law and Public Policy Program (GLP3) seminar that was coordinated by a teacher who is also a Democrat candidate for Borough Council in Eatontown.  Goofy held a fundraiser for the teacher/candidate on June 28.

A photo of Surrogate candidate Vincent Solomeno and Freeholder candidates Sue Fulton and Mayor Dirty Doherty with the school children was posted on Solomeno’s campaign facebook page and then removed after Freeholder Director Tom Arnone, a Republican running for reelection this year, inquired to North Principal Patricia Vari-Cartier as to why his opponents were campaigning in a classroom.

Schools Superintendent Dr. William George Ed.D., sent us a text claiming the issue is a personnel matter and he can’t discuss it.

Gopal and Solomeno told us that the candidates had been invited by a school administrator who they refused to name. Multiple sources who requested anonymity for fear of retribution told us that the teacher/candidate, Patti May, who is one of the two coordinators of the GLP3 Pathway, made the invitation.  So we asked Gopal and Solomeno if they wanted to correct or update their statement.

Gopal responded quickly via email:

“We have evidence of an invitation from a school administrator inviting the County Democratic candidates to share their experiences running for office with a local classroom. If you state or verify that we made up this invitation, let me make it clear that the Monmouth County Democrats will sue you and those involved in spreading that lie.”

He’d sue us if we verified that they made up the invitation? That’s one of the reasons we call him Goofy.

Gopal also said that MMM publisher Art Gallagher is not a real journalist or reporter. Given the state of journalism today, Art takes that as high praise.

Related story: Monmouth Democrats were invited to campaign at Middletown High School North during school hours

We still do not know for sure who made the invitation, but Gopal’s insistence that the invitation came from a school administrator makes this infraction a more serious issue for the school system and the citizens who oversee the schools as elected members of the Board of Education.

If the campaign appearance happened at the invitation of a young teacher and aspiring politician who wanted to impress her goofy Party Boss, the matter could be easily resolved administratively by disciplining the teacher.  But with the administration involved, as Gopal emphatically insists, there is a bigger systematic problem in the schools that the Board of Education and the community must address.

Since we got Gopal’s threat yesterday we were told, but have not yet verified, that an administrator was present at the event.  Maybe Gopal is telling the truth and the school system has a bigger problem than we were first led to believe.

A bigger concern than the campaign appearance by Democrats is the photo.  Who took it?  Who posted it on facebook?  Who removed it from facebook?  Both Gopal and Dr. George refuse to discuss the photo.

At least three of the students are identifiable in the full size photo. We asked Dr. George if the photo was also a personnel matter.  He did not answer. If the photo was taken by a school employee, it is obviously a personnel matter.  If that employee also posted the photo to the Democrats’ campaign facebook page during school hours, that obviously raises more serious questions for the Board of Education regarding the political activity taking place in the schools.  If the photo was taken and posted by a Monmouth County Democrat volunteer or employee who is not on the Middletown Board of Education payroll, that raises other legal questions that should be addressed by authorities other than the local Board of Education.

We want to know how and why the facebook post that included the photo was removed from Solomeno’s campaign webpage.  The post was taken down within hours of Arnone calling the school principal.  Solomeno said he did not make the post or remove it. “That was done by the campaign,” he said.  Who from the school called the campaign? Who responded from the campaign? Is the campaign facebook page being run from within the school?   MMM is going to keep digging. Board of Education members should demand answers to these questions.  The board members should remember that Dr. George works for them and that they represent the taxpayers and the parents.

This issue raises further questions about the character of “Lawless Matt” Doherty.  Of the three Democrat candidates who attended the campaign event within the school, only Doherty is a parent. He should have known better.  How would he and Maggie react if photos of one or more of their children appeared on an advertisement without their knowledge and consent.

Goofy Gopal must be worried that the lies and distortions the Democrats will be broadcasting on TV and stuffing into voters’ mailboxes next month, paid for by special interests groups, unions and Trenton, Essex and Hudson Democrats who want to cash in on Monmouth County taxpayers, will not be able to overcome the truths we publish here.  Twice this month they threatened legal action.  Next we expect them to attempt to discredit this site by dragging up the five year old story about Gallagher’s arrest and bankruptcy—all of which were resolved in his favor.  That’s getting to be another fall tradition.

Posted: September 26th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Education, Matt Doherty, Middletown, Monmouth County News, Monmouth Democrats, Vin Gopal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

10 Comments on “Monmouth Democrats threaten to sue over the Middletown High School North story”

  1. Thomas Stokes said at 11:53 am on September 26th, 2016:

    Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive! (note- spelled practise in Britain)

    Wouldn’t it be easier to admit you made a mistake and apologize? Oh, I forgot. These are politicians who think they walk on water and cannot be caught in telling a lie.

    I smell a taxpayer lawsuit on the horizon against the School District for either their action in sponsoring this campaign event or their inaction to discipline those involved.

  2. TheDigger said at 12:21 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    Art, it’s very simple.

    Ask GOPal to provide you with the written evidence that “an administrator” provided the invitation. I am sure you would be happy to print such “proof” on your site.

  3. Yup, said at 12:39 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    totally expect some well-funded garbage soon: but we need to trace the funding and especially the amount sent in by their big guns: this is their big turnout- year: we will soon see how badly the Dem gurus want another piece of our fine pastoral county..hope the county GOP is braced for a county- wide onslaught..the last minute push and GOTV on Election Day is key to holding them off once again.

  4. Howard Crown said at 1:18 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    Although i am no longer a resident or a voter, i am an alum of the school and care deeply about the school and the Middletown area. I feel that this story needs to get out, and all the questions need to be answered. Do not let the administration or politicians try and bully the process. Continue exposing the inconsistency of their story and expose the lies they telling. Keep up the great journalism. It’s the only real light voters get.

  5. @yup said at 3:18 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    Holding off the Dems again you say?? They weren’t held off the last time. Remember, the Dems won two seats that should have been easily won by Republicans Casagrande and Angelini.

    Don’t be surprised more seats are lost to the Dems. The Republicans have Chris Christie to thank for that, since undoubtedly, this election–and the next (2017), will be a referendum on Christie’s bad, unethical, and immoral behavior.

    Remember: The Republicans wholeheartedly supported this clown in many ways. From placing his friends in made up positions (at six-figure salaries) to raising Port Authority bridge and tunnel tolls for five-consecutive years, to Bridgegate. Not one of them said something to the effect like, “Hey governor what your doing is wrong.”

  6. Where's Bobby???? said at 5:22 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    Isn’t our good friend Bob “The Leftist Lunatic” English a far-left, extremist, liberal Democrat who is on, or was on, the board in Eatontown? What are his thoughts on this kind of crooked person having input into education matters in his town?

    ..and doesn’t it seems like a conflict of interest that a school teacher could be on a BOE and gets to vote on things like teacher pay/benefits? Wouldn’t that be like a Police Patrolman being the arbitrator between a union and township dispute? What a Crooked Hilary world.

  7. @@yup, said at 11:44 pm on September 26th, 2016:

    Read what I said again: I was warning the GOP to be ready for more possible losses in the high-turnout,Presidential year, because it has been quite obvious the North Jersey Dems have more money to spread around! -And, we did hold them off at the county level, despite being outspent there, as well!

  8. @@@Yup said at 5:26 pm on September 27th, 2016:

    The Monmouth County Republican organization DID NOT hold off the Dems. Did you forget, 4 seats were lost in the Assembly—two right here in Monmouth County: Angelini and Casagrande!!

    undoubtedly, more will be lost as a referendum on Christie’s illegal, immoral, and unethical behavior. The Republicans in this county NEVER said it was wrong.

    Furthermore, the Republicans NEVER said it was wrong that Christie placed his friend Mike Drewniak in a made up position at six figures at NJ Transit, despite no transportation experience, and despite a 9% toll increase. Where was the Republican outrage????

    Dems will be getting a bigger share of the pie this election without doubt.

  9. Once more, slowly: said at 10:05 pm on September 27th, 2016:

    was referring to holding COUNTY office seats last year, not state legislative seats: was referring to how much more Dem funding$$ is being wheeled into our county for all races, from up north! As for the governor, as a lifelong Republican, I am among those who think that his mistakes will unfortunately cost us seats at ALL levels next year- ok? Got it?

  10. Terri Vilardi said at 10:27 pm on September 28th, 2016:

    I have to say that name calling in an article is tough to take seriously. I don’t like the direction the politicians are taking. Im not sure if we should be following Trumps lead by name calling. It is disrespectful to everyone. Wether he is a liar or not that is one thing but we should keep our journalism tasteful and factual. It just seems like I am reading an article written by a Middle school student. Just my humble opinion.