Fair Haven Councilman Bob Marchese told MMM that he will not submit his Letter of Intent to run for Assembly in the 13th legislative district and that he is throwing his support behind incumbent Assemblywoman Amy Handlin and Freeholder Serena DiMaso.
“We are fortunate that Amy Handlin has chosen to continue her career in the Assembly,” Marchese said of Handlin who, until this morning was in a race to replace Senator Joe Kyrillos with her district mate, Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon. “Declan was always my guy to replace Senator Kyrillos. The notion of losing two accomplished incumbents in the district, Kyrillos and either O’Scanlon or Handlin, in one election cycle was not ideal.
“Assemblywoman Handlin has a long and distinguished public service career as a Committeewoman, Freeholder and leader in the legislature. Monmouth County and the 13th district in particular are fortunate that both O’Scanlon and Handlin will continue to work for us.”
“Freeholder Serena DiMaso has proven herself to be a tireless advocate for Monmouth County taxpayers. She has done a remarkable job on the Board of Chosen Freeholders and she is a proven vote getter, having won three competitive County-wide races decisively. Serena is the obvious choice to round out the LD 13 ticket. I was rooting for her to be by running-mate had I stayed in the race.”
Marchese said that the experience of meeting hundreds of GOP County Committee members throughout the district over the last two months was very rewarding. He said the had the endorsement of four municipal County Committees and 40% more signatures on his letter of intent than required.
Monmouth GOP Chairman Shaun Golden thanked Marchese for stepping down in the interest of Party unity. “Bob has done a great job in Fair Haven, an extremely well run town. I’m sure he would have made a fine Assemblyman if nominated. He has proven himself to be a team player who has a great future in the Monmouth GOP.”
Marchese said he hoped that Middletown Mayor Gerry Scharfenberger follows his lead and unites behind O’Scanlon, Handlin and DiMaso, “Gerry is a great mayor, and a great guy that I’m happy to have gotten to know better during the campaign. Fair Haven and Middletown are both better off for the relationship we have built. But it is time for us to unite as a Party, forsake the intramural battle, and focus our efforts on electing a Republican Governor, taking back control of the legislature, and making sure our Freeholder candidates win in November”