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Winners and Losers of 2014

Winners

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon led the effort to terminate New Jersey’s Red Light Camera Program.

O’Scanlon and Co. have been relentless in monitoring the Red Light Camera Program and telling the truth about it. They have hired independent experts to investigate complaints and document fraud within the program.  They have sorted through data that has regularly been obfuscated by the red light camera companies (and bureaucrats friendly to them) to reflect improved safety conditions at RCL intersections where in fact conditions had often worsened.   They have worked hard in getting the word out about the program’s failure and corruption. They have countered expensive advertising campaigns by the red light camera companies and countered expensive lobbyists working the halls of the Statehouse, without the benefit of the profits the red light camera companies stole from the motoring public to fund their efforts.

In thwarting the Red Light Camera Program’s renewal, O’Scanlon has proved himself to be “the real deal”….a leader who fights for the right thing because it is the right thing. He is an example of what a “public servant” should be.

Christine Giordano Hanlon 

Christine Hanlon croppedDubbed The Architect by Monmouth GOP Chairman Shaun Golden, Hanlon designed Golden’s defeat of John Bennett for leadership of the County Party, avenging her razor thin 3 vote defeat by Bennett in 2012.  By building a coalition of previous regional rivals and splitting Bennett’s 2012 coalition, which he failed to nourish, Hanlon demonstrated strategic leadership without seeking the limelight or accolades.

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Posted: December 31st, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Opinion | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments »

A Different Brand of Politics

rich20photoBy Gary Rich, Monmouth County Deputy Freeholder Director

 

Art Gallagher thinks I’m a winner. Well, sort of. And while I appreciate the (backhanded) compliment, I’d like to pose a few items of food for thought.

Maybe, just maybe, voters really are tired of the game playing and posturing that exists in much of politics. (I think voters across the county sent that message pretty loud and clear with their votes this Tuesday.)

Maybe all they really want is for us to get back to the business of working on the issues that affect them.

Maybe they don’t care how many hands we have shaken or how many babies have been kissed. Maybe they see through that.

Maybe that’s why—despite suffering “from a perception within the Party’s leadership that [I have] skated by on the backs of others” (a perception that Art clearly seems all too eager to perpetuate)—I have now TWICE been the top vote-getter in each of my races for County Freeholder. (FOUR TIMES if you add my convention victory in March and June’s Primary Election.)

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Posted: November 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Elections, Gary Rich, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders | Tags: , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Losers: The Battle for Monmouth

This morning we gave you the winners from the Battle for Monmouth.   Without further adieu, the losers:

Vin SmugVin Gopal. Underneath that boyish smile and pleasant demeanor is a nasty, dirty, ruthless political operative.  The Monmouth Democratic Chairman showed his true colors in 2013 with his defamatory allegations against Sean DiSomma in the Red Bank Council race. Give him several hundred thousand dollars, which the NJ Democrats did this year, and he tries to destroy the good names of distinguished public servants simply because they hold offices he wants. Monmouth Republicans, particularly some in the legislative delegation, who are friendly with Gopal should reconsider their judgement about him.  It no longer can be said that Vin is a wolf in sheeps clothing.  He’s a wolf.

The NJ Democratic State Committee, Essex County Clerk Chris Durkin, Senator Cory Booker, Assemblyman Joe Cryan, various labor unions and anyone else who gave Gopal money.  They got nothing for it.

The Asbury Park Press. Neptune Nudniks is no longer an appropriate moniker for them.  They are not stupid or incompetent as “nudnik” implies.  They are dishonest and lazy. Their coverage of the Monmouth County Freeholders race was spoon fed or edited by Gopal and his candidates Larry Luttrell and Giuseppe “Joe” Grillo.  Gopal, Luttrell and Grillo used APP to counter MMM’s coverage of the race, which we find hilarious and complimentary.  It didn’t work because APP no longer has influence in Monmouth County.

Their election night coverage was a disaster.  While APP was reporting on software problems at the Monmouth County Clerk’s Office, MMM was reporting election results.

The Monmouth County Clerk’s Office.  The Monmouth County Election Results website is the New Jersey equivalent of HeathCare.gov.

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Posted: November 5th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Elections, John Curley, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Vin Gopal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 56 Comments »

Winners: The Battle for Monmouth

The 2014 Monmouth County election is in the books.

After the most intense campaign in memory funded by out of county Democrats, Monmouth Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal has nothing but IOUs to show for his duplicitous efforts.

There are literally hundreds of winners in this campaign county wide.  From candidates making their first bid for elected office, to the seasoned pros defending their records, to the selfless volunteers who knocked on doors and made over 50,000 phone calls to voters. We congratulate the entire Monmouth Republican team.

On every championship team there are stars who get the accolades on behalf of the entire team.  Here are five special mentions from this hard fought victory:

The top Winners of the Battle for Monmouth:

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Lillian G. Burry. Burry has been elected county-wide 4 times. Three of those four elections were hard fought.  None had the benefit of up ballot coattails. In 2005 she prevailed despite the anti-Republican sentiment generated by Operation Bid Rig.  In 2008, Burry prevailed as the top vote getter over the Obama wave that saw an unprecedented Democratic turnout.   The low turnout race of 2011 was relatively easy.  In the campaign that just concluded, Burry’s integrity was maliciously maligned by Gopal and his henchmen armed with hundreds of thousands of Democratic money wheeled into the county from Trenton, Essex, Hudson, Union and Middlesex counties.

Burry stood tall and fought hard.  She is a proven winner, in politics and life. A role model for women and men, Burry embraces the toughest challenges and prevails with honor.

Shaun Golden

Shaun Golden.  Already a rising star after his huge reelection victory as Monmouth County Sheriff in 2013, Golden risked his career in taking on Chairman John Bennett last spring in-order to lead beyond the status quo .

Bennett boasted of his fundraising prowess in his campaign to retain the Chairmanship, but left Golden with an overdrawn check book on June 10.

Undaunted, Bennett’s turd was just another challenge for Golden to overcome.

Shaun has demonstrated extraordinary leadership in the face of adversity by doing what he said he would do. He assembled a strong team by appointing an unprecedented four Regional Vice Chairs. He empowered municipal Party leaders and candidates, expanded the Party’s demographic diversity, established a strong social media presence and fed the rank and file when they came out to work. He raised money and got the job done without wasteful spending. When all the money is counted the Democrats will have outspent the Republicans 3 or 4 to 1.

If the hapless NJGOP is ever to gain traction in the State, it will take a leader like Shaun Golden to make it happen.

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Posted: November 5th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Elections, Gary Rich, Lillian Burry, Manalapan, Monmouth County, Shaun Golden | Tags: , , , , , , , | 12 Comments »

Winners and Losers: Powerball edition

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By Stuart J. Moskovitz

Well, yesterday the powerball numbers were drawn and no one in New Jersey had the winning ticket. In fact, no one I know had the winning ticket. Today the social media is filled with declarations of how the people who spent money on the tickets are “losers.” The people who are saying that, however, are wrong — dead wrong. Those people who bought a ticket had very little chance of winning a big prize. Realistically, the chances were very close to nonexistent. But, assuming that they didn’t bet the mortgage money on their lottery tickets, the people who bought those tickets weren’t losers, they were winners. The people who just said to themselves there was no chance of winning were, in reality, results notwithstanding, the people who lost. They lost because they failed to dream. They lost because they refused to believe in the seemingly impossible. They lost because they looked at overwhelming odds and declared defeat. They lost because they refused to reach for the unreachable star.

A potted plant goes through life without dreaming. It gets watered, or it doesn’t. It gets light, or it doesn’t. And it lives or dies according to whether or not it gets what it needs. That’s not the way humans are built. We are built to dream. We are built to strive. We are built to reach beyond ourselves. We are built to hope. Even if it is something as simple as $2.00 for a powerball ticket, those people who spent those $2.00 were winners. For hours or days before the numbers were drawn, they got to dream. They got to think about what they would do with the money they were realistically never going to see. They got to imagine. They got to hope. They got to reach.

In the end, the quality of life is never measured by what we have. The quality of each life is measured by the height of our dreams, the energy behind our reach, the willingness to suspend probability for the expectation that nothing great follows mathematical probability, that no great accomplishment in the history of mankind ever came by way of following the proven path.

Posted: November 29th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Powerball lottery | Tags: , , | Comments Off on Winners and Losers: Powerball edition

Winners and Losers From the Freeholder Election

Winners

Serena DiMaso. In her third try for the office, Monmouth County’s new freeholder was victorious by a wider than expected margin.  During this campaign, Serena revealed a dignified strength and tenacity that had been missing from her earlier bids.

Joe Oxley. The chairman who had done away with conventions due to the chaos and deep divisions that often resulted, lead the county party in an orderly and adult gathering that left the party stronger.

Peter Doyle.  The previously little known West Point graduate, a councilman from a small town (only 8 committee votes in Atlantic Highlands) introduced himself to the county as a strong leader with a bright political future.  He exceeded expectations with his third place finish and is considered a front runner for future county or state vacancies.

Bob Walsh.  The Howell Mayor ran a positive, passionate and clean campaign.  His concession to DiMaso during the first few moments of the second ballot vote was the right thing to do for party unity. 

“I treat people the way I’d like to be treated,” Walsh said in an post election interview,  “Serena won, it’s a simple as that.  She worked hard and ran a clean campaign.  She’s a wonderful woman who has my complete support as a freeholder and in the coming election in November.”

Tom Fitzsimmons.  The Matawan councilman and political consultant managed a positive campaign for DiMaso. He proved to be the best vote counter and bs detector in the field.

The Monmouth County Republican Party.  The days of a raucous divisions are certifiably behind us.  The party produced four very qualified candidates, elected the best, and left the convention unified.  Worries of having a quorum present proved to be unjustified as 487 committee members showed up to preform their statutory duty.

Monmouth County Residents have an outstanding Board of Freeholders.

Holmdel Patch provided accurate and timely coverage of the election which is syndicated throughout Patch’s other Monmouth County sites.

Losers

Ryan Green.  The Manalapan Committeeman didn’t realize that, like Doyle, he was never going to overcome the countywide support that DiMaso and Walsh had built in previous runs for the office.  Doyle got it in the last week of the campaign and kept building relationships for the future.  Green threw an ill advised Hail Mary pass with his 11th hour press release bashing DiMaso.  DiMaso intercepted the errant pass and ran it back for a touchdown, leaving Green and Manalapan Chairman Steve McEnry, the advisor, damaged.  Rather than leaving this campaign with a base to build on going forward, Green finds himself stuck in a hole that McEnry let him dig.  Green was slated to be Mayor of Manalapan prior to entering the freeholder race. Now he’s an ambitious committeeman who has been publicly chastised by a newly elected freeholder for breaking the “11th commandment.”

Steve McEnry.  See Ryan Green above. Manalapan has 52 county committee members.  Green only received 39 votes total.  An embarrassing failure for the Manalapan Chairman.

Jim Giannell. The Kingmaker’s winning streak has been broken.  After his candidate, Walsh, conceded, Giannell graciously passed the mantle to Fitzsimmons.

Monmouth County Democrats.  DiMaso was not the candidate they were rooting for.  Regardless of who their new chairman is, Vin Gopal or Frank “LaHornica” LaRocca, they will be hard pressed to field a competitive slate this year.

The Asbury Park Press.  As of 5:25PM they still have not reported that Monmouth County has a new freeholder.  APP has made no mention of the special Title 19 election since Christmas Eve.

Posted: January 14th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth County Republican Committee | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments »