Anna Little, with good reason, has been taking credit for John Bennett’s election as Monmouth GOP Chairman. If not for Little endorsing her benefactor and encouraging the County Committee members who are also Tea Party activists to vote for Bennett, Christine Hanlon would be Chairwoman.
Little’s reward, whatever it is, will come sometime after she loses to Frank Pallone in November.
The biggest change that Bennett has made since taking over the helm of the Monmouth GOP six weeks ago is to start to make good on his campaign promise to raise the money necessary for county campaigns. He has informed the Monmouth GOP ticket of Freeholders John Curley and Serena DiMaso, as well as County Clerk Claire French, not to worry about rasing money for the fall campaign. He has instructed office holders not on the ballot this fall, including the legislative delegation and the sheriff, all of whom have campaigns next year, to suspend their fund raising activities effective August 1 so as not to compete with his efforts for the current campaign.
But how will he raise the money?
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: July 31st, 2012 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Anna Little, Brookdale Community College, Campaign Contributions, Campaign Finance, Christine Hanlon, CME Associates, ELEC, Frank Pallone, Freeholder, John Bennett, John Curley, Middlesex County Democrats, Middletown Democrats, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County Republican Committee, Monmouth GOP | Tags: Anna Little, Bill Barham, Brookdale Board of Trustees, Brookdale Community College, CME Associates, CME Engineering, Fred Niemann, Highlands, John Bennett, John Curley, Josh Elkes, Rick O'Neil | 35 Comments »
The filing deadline is April 2.
With all the attention and excitement being paid to Joe Kyrillo’s U.S. Senate candidacy and a new map that most think makes Frank Pallone even harder to beat, there is little if any talk about a GOP candidate in the 6th Congressional District.
So let’s throw some names out there and have then have a poll. I start with names that come to mind. Please add names in the comments. Over the weekend I’ll create a poll.
Former Highlands Mayor Anna Little
Selika Josiah Gore, Marlboro
Matawan Councilwoman Toni Marie Angelini
Matawan Councilman Tom Fitzsimmons
Assemblywoman Amy Handlin
Atlantic Highlands Councilman Peter Doyle
Keyport Mayor Bob McLeod
Former Middletown Committeeman Tom Wilkens
Middletown Mayor Tony Fiore
Hazlet Committeeman Scott Aagre
James Hogan of Long Branch
Oceanport Councilman Joe Irace
Former Freeholder Bill Barham
Former Assemblyman, triCityNews Publisher Dan Jacobson
Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno
Freeholder Director John Curley
Posted: February 2nd, 2012 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: 2012 Congressional Races, Congress, Congressional Redistricting | Tags: Amy Handlin, Anna Little, Bill Barham, Bob McLeod, Dan Jacobson, Frank Pallone, Jim Hogan, Joe Irace, John Curley, Kim Guadagno, NJ CD 6, Peter Doyle, Scott Aagre, Selika Joshua Gore, Tom Fitzsimmons, Tom Wilkens, Toni Marie Angelini, Tony Fiore | 38 Comments »
A strong argument could be made that the path to becoming a Monmouth County Freeholder goes through Red Bank realtor Jim Giannell’s office.
Since 2005 when he backed Colts Neck Mayor Lillian Burry, Giannell has picked every non-incumbent Freeholder nominee except two. One exception was Marlboro Councilman Jeff Cantor who replaced Freeholder Anna Little, a Giannell pick, on the ticket in 2007. Cantor lost a close election to Democrat John D’Amico and then left the Republican party for Jon Hornick’s Democratic organization in Marlboro. The other exception is John Curley. Curley was Giannell’s pick over Serena DiMaso in 2008. Curley narrowly lost to Amy Mallet in the Obama landslide. In 2009 Giannell backed Kim Spatola, a former Atlantic Highlands councilwoman over Curley. Curley prevailed at Joe Oxley’s first candidate selection screening and went on to defeat Sean Byrnes of Middletown in the 2009 Christie landslide in Monmouth.
With the election of Gary Rich earlier this month, 3.5, counting Curley, of five Freeholders owe their offices to Jim Giannell. If the former Red Bank municipal chairman’s pick in the current race to replace Assemblyman-elect Rob Clifton, Howell Mayor Bob Walsh, is elected on January 14, Giannell will have picked all five members of the board.
While the Freeholders may owe their careers to Giannell, there is little, if any, evidence that he is a boss, in the classic New Jersey sense of the word. Once they take office, the Freeholders go their own way. Burry is supporting Anne Marie Conte over Walsh in the current race. Curley and Tom Arnone are staying out of the race for now.
Here is a list of Giannell’s picks for non-incumbent Freeholders since 2005:
2005: Lillian Burry. Burry ran with incumbent Bill Barham. Barham was elected at a Republican convention earlier in 2005 to replace long time Freeholder Director Harry Larrison. Even in the wake of the Operation Bid Rig scandal which tarnished the Republican brand, Barham and Burry defeated Democrats Barbara McMorrow and Rebecca Aaronson and Independent Brian Unger. The Republican victory was in large measure do to the Asbury Park Press’s call for voters to bullet vote for Unger. Back then the APP’s endorsement still had influence. Unger garnered over 18,000 votes. Burry’s margin of victory over McMorrow was only 1,792 votes.
2006: Anna Little and Andrew Lucas. Little was elected, by one vote, over Howell Mayor Joe DiBella at a convention to replace Amy Handlin who had been elected to the Assembly. Giannell managed Little’s campaign and her floor fight at the convention. A month later at a contentious multiple ballot nominating convention, Giannell and candidate Terrence Wall threw their support to Lucas in an anti-establishment move against DiBella and then Chairman Fred Neimann. Little went on to win the rest of Handlin’s unexpired term in the general election. Lucas lost to Barbara McMorrow.
2007: Giannell did not have a candidate. Little, his successful pick in 2006, spent a contentious year battling with Chairman Puharic and Freeholder Director Barham. Little declined to seek the nomination rather than submit to Puharic’s rules for screening and the convention. Cantor was selected to join incumbent Rob Clifton on the ticket. Clifton won. Cantor lost to Democrat John D’Amico.
2008: John Curley was Giannell’s pick over Serena DiMaso who had the backing of Chairman Adam Puharic. Burry was Curley’s running mate. In a photo finish election dominated by Obamamania, Burry prevailed and Curley lost to Amy Mallet on the count of provisional ballots. Democrats took control of the Freeholder Board for the first time in 20 years.
2009: Giannell backed Chairman Joe Oxley in supporting Atlantic Highlands former Councilwoman Kim Spatola over Curley. McMorrow was up for reelection and was considered a lock to be reelected. Nominating a woman, given the pro woman gender gap demonstrated by Burry and Mallet’s 2008 victories was considered the only hope of defeating McMorrow. Just before the nominating meetings for both parties, McMorrow announced she would not seek another term. Curley won a roll call vote at Oxley’s first screening selection. The Democrats scrambled to find a candidate to replace McMorrow, settling on Byrnes from Middletown over Mike Beson of Neptune Township. Curley defeated Byrnes and Republicans won back control of the Board.
2010: Giannell’s pick, Tom Arnone, narrowly defeated former Middltown Committeeman Tom Wilkens and Spring Lake Councilman Gary Rich. Arnone and incumbent Rob Clifton went on to defeat D’Amico and Spring Lake Councilwoman Janice Venables.
2011: Giannell backed Rich over Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas, who had Burry’s support, Walsh, and Wall Township Committeeman George Newberry. Rich won the nomination with 25 votes in the screening committee. Lucas has 23 votes and Newberry 22. Walsh withdrew before the polling. Rich and incumbent Burry went on the defeat Mallet and newcomer William Shea earlier this month.
2012? Monmouth County Republicans have not had a nominating convention of all county committee members since 2008. It remains to be seen if Giannell can pull off another close race. Don’t bet the house against Bob Walsh.
Posted: November 30th, 2011 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County Republican Committee, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: Adam Puharic, Amy Mallet, Andrew Lucas, Anne Marie Conte, Barbara McMorrow, Bill Barham, Bob Walsh, Brian Unger, Fred Niemann, Gary Rich, George Newberry, Harry Larrison, Janice Venables, Jeff Cantor, Jim Giannell, Joe DiBella, Joe Oxley, John Curley, Jon Hornick, Mike Beson, Rebecca Aaronson, Rob Clifton, Sean Byrnes, Serena DiMaso, Terrence Wall, Tom Arnone, Tom Wilkens, William Shea | 25 Comments »
Field of Candidates Looks To Be Widening
By Art Gallagher
The Republican County convention to elect a Monmouth County Freeholder to fill the coming vacancy caused by Freeholder Director Rob Clifton’s ascension to the State Assembly will be held on Saturday January 14th, according to GOP Chairman Joe Oxley. The location and exact time has yet to be determined.
A quorum, 50% plus 1, of all Republican County Committee members, as certified by the Superintendent of Elections, must be present for the election to be to be official.
Howell Mayor Bob Walsh is a candidate. Those considering entering the race include Holmdel Deputy Mayor Serena DiMaso, former Freeholder Bill Barham, Wall Committee member George Newberry, Keyport Councilman Bob Burlew, Atlantic Highlands Councilman Peter Doyle, Manalapan Deputy Mayor Ryan Green, former Middletown Committee member Tom Wilkens and former Howell Mayor Joe DiBella.
Posted: November 26th, 2011 | Author: Art Gallagher | Filed under: Freeholder, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Republican Committee, Monmouth GOP | Tags: Bill Barham, Bob Burlew, Bob Walsh, Joe DiBella, Joe Oxley, Monmouth County Freeholder election. Monmouth County Republican Convention, Peter Doyle, Ryan Green, Serena DiMaso, Tom Wilkens | 18 Comments »