Hornik’s Republican Administration in Marlboro is Gopal’s top 2015 priority

Updated: Former Marlboro GOP Chairman Christopher Dean wants the world to know that Councilman Scalea was never a Republican and that he has proof from the Board of Elections. Dean says that MMM is spreading Mayor Hornik’s lies and that facts don’t matter on this site. He said he’s going to spread the word at some meetings he has coming up.

Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik

Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik

Desperate to be a player and for a victory of any kind, Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal told a gathering of statewide Democrats in Freehold on Wednesday evening that Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik’s reelection race is his top priority this year, according to report on PolitickerNJ.

Marlboro is a Republican town. Year after year the Township’s voters break for Republicans for Freeholder, County Constitutional offices, State Legislature, Governor, Congress, Senate and President.

Yet Hornik leads a municipal government that on paper is Democratic.  The reality is that Hornik’s administration is dominated by former Republicans who left a dysfunctional local GOP at the mayor’s urging.

Hornik, whose father Saul was mayor of the community from 1980-1991, was first elected in 2007 in a race remembered for incumbent Republican Robert Kleinberg distributing flyers implying that he had been endorsed by NJ 101.5’s morning host Jim Gearhart.  Gearhart and Gannett columnist Bob Ingle , then media leaders of the GRIP (Get Rid of Incumbent Politicians) movement, went ballistic on Kleinberg.  Kleinberg imploded during a live radio interview wherein he explained the flyers were not meant to imply an endorsement, but as a way to show his kids that people were saying nice things about him.

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Posted: March 27th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Jon Hornik, Marlboro, Monmouth County, Monmouth Democrats, Vin Gopal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Winners and Losers of 2013, Part One

Winners

January 2013 seems like a long time ago.

The years are supposed to go by faster as we get older.  2013 missed the memo, at least for me. President Obama’s second Inauguration and Freeholder John Curley’s second swearing in seem like a long time ago.

Selikia Joshia Gore started us off in 2013 with a timeless call to renew our humanity; the ongoing struggle of saints and sinners to love one another regardless of standing, status or creed.   It is a winning message that works only by embracing our failures without resigning to them.

The Governor. Governor Chris Christie started the year lambasting House Speaker John Boehner and the Congressional Republicans for playing politics with Superstorm Sandy aid and ended the year as the front runner for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. In between he built a bi-partisan and multi-cultural coalition that reelected him with over 60% of the vote in Blue Jersey.   Christie had the best year of any politician in America.  Only Pope Francis and Vladimir Putin had better years globally.

U.S. Senator Bob Menendez.  Menendez started the year on the losers list. Embroiled in a sandal of allegations of his cavorting with teenaged girls in the Dominican Republic and using the powers of his office to benefit the businesses of the donor who arranged the party, speculation was that he would resign as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, if not his Senate seat.  Menendez seems to have survived an FBI investigation into his relationship with Dr. Saloman Melgan unscathed.

At the end of the year, Menendez’s position seems secure. He is the leading, and most powerful, critic of President Obama’s foreign policy.   His approval ratings are net positive 22 points in the last Monmouth University Poll. He got engaged to be married earlier this month.

Given where he started, Menendez may have had the best 2013 of any New Jersey public figure, other than Christie.

The Gramiccionis.  The Wall Township power couple had a very good year.  In March, Christopher, the Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor and U.S. Naval Reserve Officer, received orders to report for a 9 month tour of active duty in Afghanistan effective in August.  Those orders were canceled in July, keeping Chris on the job fighting crime in Monmouth County and home for the holidays.  Deborah was appointed by Governor Christie to be the Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.  The job pays $289,657.

Monmouth County Republicans.  Sheriff Shaun Golden, Freeholder Director Tom Arnone and Deputy Director Serena DiMaso were always expected to be reelected on the strength of their records and due to the fact that Monmouth County Independent voters usually vote Republican.  They make the winners list by virtue of fact that they ran as if they were behind, not taking any votes for granted.  More importantly, they ran a positive campaign based on reducing spending, holding the line on taxes, and improving services, in the face of yet another negative campaign on the part of the Monmouth County Democrats.

Monmouth County’s Legislative Delegation.  Each member of Monmouth County’s Legislative Delegation deserves more recognition than space will allow.

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Posted: December 28th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, New Jersey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Municipal Races To Watch

Monmouth_Game_BoxThe Battle of Monmouth is in the municipalities today.

Monmouth Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal is hoping to be the Gene Michael of politics. Michael, the New York Yankees General Manger in the early 1990’s, rebuilt the mediocre team back to dominant glory by focusing on new talent in the farm system.  As a player, Michael was a master of the hidden ball trick.  In baseball the hidden ball trick is when a position player fakes throwing the ball back to the pitcher after a play, only to tag out the base runner when he take a lead off the base.

Like Michael, Gopal is trying to build his farm team in Monmouth County municipal races, knowing he can’t win the big show in the short term, with an eye on future dominance of Monmouth County government and the State of New Jersey.  Also like Michael, Gopal always has a trick up his sleeve behind his youthful smile and pleasant demeanor.

Gopal hasn’t even fielded a team in 23 races in 16 Monmouth County towns.  Yet he has the press and New Jersey’s Democratic leadership convinced he’s building a future empire from the bottom up.

But if he doesn’t deliver the goods tonight, Gopal could end up as a Hardy Peterson, the Yankees General Manager who only lasted in the job for one year, 1990, instead of Michael, and find himself challenged for the county chairmanship when his first term ends in June.

The towns to watch tonight are Red Bank, Aberdeen, Eatontown, Highlands, Hazlet and Marlboro.

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Posted: November 5th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: 2013 Election, Monmouth County, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Mazzola Met With Bennett Before Switching Partys

Mayor Jon Hornik was present at the meeting

Carol Mazzola, right, with Selika Joshia Gore and Kim Guadagno during their 2009 campaign. facebook photo

Carol Mazzola, right, with Selika Josiah Gore and Kim Guadagno during their 2009 campaign. facebook photo

Marlboro Councilwoman Carol Mazzola met with Monmouth County Republican Chairman John Bennett prior to announcing her to run for reelection as a Democrat this fall.  Mayor Jon Hornik was present at the meeting which took place in Freehold.

Mazzola told MoreMonmouthMusings that she met with Bennett out of respect for the chairman for whom she has great admiration.  She said that Bennett attempted to pursuade her not to switch partys, but that her mind was already made upInflatable Slide.

The councilwoman, who is seeking her second term on the Marlboro Council, said she’s been struggling with the decision for many months.  “In the end, I know I made the right decision for myself and for the citizens of Marlboro,” she said, “win lose or draw, I know I did the right thing.”

Bennett has not returned MMM’s call for comment.

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Posted: January 17th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: John Bennett, Jon Hornik, Marlboro, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Republican Committee, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Mazzola Met With Bennett Before Switching Partys

20 Prominent Democrats Endorse LaRocca for Monmouth Democratic Chair

Twenty prominent Democrats, including former State Democratic Chairman, Assemblyman Joe Cryan, Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornik, Red Bank Mayor Pat Menna, and Long Branch Mayor Adam Schneider have endorsed Marlboro Council President Frank LaRocca for Monmouth County Democratic Chairman.

In their endorsement letter the Democratic leaders said that LaRocca has the qualities necessary to be a successful Chairman “in abundance”

  1. Unmatched history of fundraising at the local level having raised over $500,000 in three election cycles for municipal elections.
  2. Commitment to ALL Monmouth County Democrats. Frank has hosted fundraisers, provided headshots and lawn signs, and offered strategic advice for all candidates up and down the ballot.
  3. Proven winner, having won 8 or 9 seats in Marlboro, including 2 of 3 Republican seats during the Christie campaign.
  4. Energized and empowered an over 1,200 member youth council creating a culture of community and civic responsibility in Monmouth County teens.
  5. Accomplished and respected professional, recognised as being a Top 100 lawyer in New Jersey by his peers five (5) years in a row.

The endorsement letter can be downloaded here.

The Monmouth County Democrats will elect a new Chairman Tuesday evening, 6PM to 9PM, at the Shore Casino in Atlantic Highlands.  The candidates are LaRocca and Long Branch businessman/publisher Vin Gopal.

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Posted: June 11th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth Democrats | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Without Vin Gopal, Kucinich Loses Congressional Seat

Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich lost his primary race last night to Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur.  Kucinich and Kaptur were forced to face each other as a result of redistricting.

Kucinich’s former national campaign manager, Monmouth County’s Vin Gopal, was not involved in this defeat.

Gopal, a candidate for Assembly in New Jersey’s 11th district last year, is running for Monmouth County Democratic Chairman against Marlboro Councilman Frank LaRocca.

Kaptur will face Samuel Wurzelbacher, AKA “Joe the plumber” in the November general election.

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Posted: March 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: 2012 Congressional Races, Monmouth Democrats | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Without Vin Gopal, Kucinich Loses Congressional Seat

Garden State Equality Apologizes For Endorsing Mary Pat Angelini

In an email sent to his members in the 11th Legislative District this afternoon, Garden State Equality President Steve Goldstein apologized for endorsing Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini in last November’s election.

Angelini, who has been very supportive of the gay lobbying group was absent for the Assembly vote on the Marriage Equality and Religious Exemptions Act on Thursday.  The bill passed 42-33 with two Democrats voting NO.

Angelini was on vacation, celebrating her 25th wedding anniversary in Jamaica, according to Goldstein’s email.

Goldstein said that he and two other GSE members met with the Assemblywoman on Friday, February 10th in an attempt to persuade her to cut her vacation short in order to be present of the vote.  Angelini refused stating that the bill had the votes to pass anyway and in the unexpected event that it failed, it would be voted on again in a matter of weeks.

Goldstein, and “an avalanche of calls and emails” said it did not matter that the bill had enough votes to pass:

Dear members, as so many of you have told us through your avalance of calls and emails, it shouldn’t matter whether or not Mary Pat’s vote was needed.   She is elected to vote in the legislature, and certainly elected to vote on the biggest issues of the day – perhaps the biggest issue of all time to so many in her district like you.  If you are a public servant, there are absoluely times to have personal lives.   Was this really one of them, especially when the legislature will be on break in a month?

 

Goldstein said that the group was “deeply pained” by Angelini’s absence.

Goldstein said he received more calls and emails filled with “deep pain and anger” than he received after Sean Kean’s 2009 vote against a similar bill and Kean’s “remarkably insensitive speech” about that vote.  The calls and emails suggested that GSE extract a written promise from Angelini that she will vote to override Governor Christie’s veto and that she work on other Republican legislators to do the same.

Goldstein’s entire email can be read here.

Asked to comment, Angelini said she had not seen the email.  MMM forwarded it to her.  This post will be update if she comments.

In addition to the comments about Angelini, Goldstein praised Senator Jennifer Beck for her work in support of the gay marriage bill.  He also promised to make up for GSE’s endorsement of Angelini to Vin Gopal, one of Angelini’s opponents last November, in his upcoming race against Marlboro Councilman Frank LaRocca for the Monmouth County Democratic Chairmanship.

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Posted: February 18th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Marriage Equality and Religious Exemptions Act | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments »

Ethics Charges Dragging On In Marlboro

The ethics complaint filed last October by former Marlboro council candidate Christopher Dean will not get a hearing until next month at the earliest, according to a report in the NewsTranscript.

Dean, who is also the GOP municipal chairman in Marlboro, filed a complaint with the Township’s Ethic Board a week before the election because the Mayor and Council approved no-bid purchases of promotional items from Inkwell Global Marketing.  Inwell is owned by Councilwoman Randi Marder’s husband.  Marder, who works at the company, voted to approve the purchases, according to Dean’s complaint.

At the February 8 meeting of the Ethic Board, Dean said his complaint included Mayor Jon Hornick and Council Frank LaRocca.  Board Chairman Michael Cali said Dean should file new complaints against Hornick and LaRocca.

LaRocca is a candidate for Monmouth County Democratic Chairman.

The board has not yet held a hearing on the complaint because they are unsure if they should do so in public or in executive session, out of concern for Marder’s privacy.  Their new attorney, Kenneth Biedzynski, said he would advise the board on the proper venue for a hearing at the March meeting.

Dean requested that the board refer the complaint to the Local Finance Board.

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Posted: February 16th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Marlboro, Monmouth Democrats | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Doherty Is Not Running For Freeholder

Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty, left, and Governor Chris Christie, on the Belmar boardwalk last summer.  Freeholder Director John Curley, the the background, right, will not be challenged by Doherty this November.

Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty, left, and Governor Chris Christie, on the Belmar boardwalk last summer. Freeholder Director John Curley, the the background, right, will not be challenged by Doherty this November.

Belmar Mayor Matt Doherty, a Democrat, told MMM that he will not be a candidate for Freeholder this year.

“John Curley is doing a good job.  He was the right choice to be Director,” Doherty said in a phone interview, ” as a mayor, I find John to be very responsive.  He acts without regard to partisanship.”

Doherty is not aware of any Democratic candidates in the field for Freeholder.

Regarding the race for the Monmouth County Democratic Chairmanship, Doherty said he thought either candidate, Frank “LaHornica” LaRocca or Vin Gopal, would do a good job.  “What those guys ( LaRocca and Marlboro Mayor Jon Hornick) did to win control of Marlboro is impressive.  But Vin is really hustling and I know him better.”

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Posted: January 27th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

2012 Predictions

Serena DiMaso will be elected Monmouth County Freeholder at the Title 19 convention of the Monmouth GOP Committee on January 14.   Bob Walsh will withdraw during his speech before the convention.

Bill Spadea defeats Donna Simon and John Saccenti at a Title 19 convention of the 16th legislative district to fill the assembly seat vacated by the death of Peter Biondi.  After recounts and law suits, the November special election for the seat is declared a tie between Spadea and Democratic Princeton Committeewoman Sue Nemeth.  Another special election is scheduled for January of 2013.

Joe Oxley will be named Township Administrator and In House Attorney for Wall Township.  The appointment will forward a statewide trend of municipalities hiring either attorneys or engineers as their administrators as a cost saving measure.   Oxley is reelected GOP County Chairman by acclamation.  Senator Jennifer Beck will give the nominating speech.  Christine Hanlon will be Vice Chair.

Middletown will get a new Parks and Recreation Director.  It won’t be Linda Baum or Pam Brightbill.

Jim McGreevey is ordained an Episcopal priest.

Jon Corzine remembers where he put the $1.2 billion.

Senator Joe Kyrillos will be the GOP nominee for U.S. Senator, defeating Anna Little and Joseph Rudy Rullo in the primary. 

Congressman Steve Rothman defeats Congressman Bill Pascrell in the Democratic primary for the 9th Congressional District nomination.  In the only surprise of the primary, former Bergen County GOP Freeholder Anthony Cassano, who had agreed to take one for the team in the 9th, was defeated when the Bergen County Tea Party Group organized a write-in campaign for Anna Little.  Little was on the ballot as a U.S. Senate candidate.  Having lost the Senate nomination to Joe Kyrillos, Little accepts the nomination, asks Kyrillos to host a fundraiser for her, and promises to move into the district if she wins.   She doesn’t.

Maggie Moran defeats Vin Gopal and Frank “LaHornica” LaRocca in a close election for the Monmouth County Democratic Chairmanship.

James Hogan of Long Branch is the GOP nominee for Congress in New Jersey’s 6th Congressional District.  Frank Pallone is reelected by 8%.

Jordan Rickards of North Brunswick  is the GOP nominee for Congress in New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District.  Rush Holt is reelected by 15%.

On August 28, the second day of the Republican National Convention, the National Weather Service warns that Hurricane Chris is heading towards the Jersey Shore.  Acting Governor Kim Guadagno gets on TV and says, “Get the heck off of the beach please.”

Mitt Romney will be the GOP nominee for President of the United States.  New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will be the Vice Presidential nominee.

President Obama nominates Vice President Joe Biden to be Secretary of State.  Biden submits his resignation as VP effective upon both houses of congress confirming his successor.  President Obama nominates Hillary Clinton as Vice President.   Speaker of the House John Boehner refuses to schedule confirmation hearings for the VP nomination on the constitutional grounds that their is no vacancy in the office.   Obama makes them both recess appointments.  Clinton is nominated for VP at the Democratic National Convention and Secretary of State Biden spends October in China.

Despite losing their home states of Massachusetts and New Jersey, the Romney-Christie ticket wins the electoral college by one vote, 270-269.   The winning vote comes from Maine, one of two states that awards electoral votes by congressional district.  Romney-Christie lose Maine 3-1 but win the election.  Obama-Clinton file suit to challenge Maine’s method of awarding electoral votes.  Romney-Christie counter with a suit in Nebraska, which they won 4 electoral votes to 1, using the same arguments that Obama-Clinton use in Maine.  The U.S. Supreme Court decides both cases for the plaintiffs, 5-4, and determined that in all future presidential elections that electoral votes are awarded on a winner take all basis nationally.  Tea Party leader Dwight Kehoe calls for the impeachment of the Justices who voted affirmatively, claiming that they don’t understand the 10th Amendment.

Robert Menendez defeats Joe Kyrillos for U.S. Senate by 1%.

U. S. Senator Frank Lautenberg resigns.   In one of his last acts as Governor before ascending to the Vice Presidency, Chris Christie appoints Kyrillos to Lautenberg’s Senate seat.

What do you think will happen?

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Posted: December 30th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: 2011 Year in review, 2012 Predictions | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments »