This year’s hot congressional contests are happening further north, in CD3 and CD12, but that doesn’t mean elections are cancelled everywhere else, Save Jerseyans.
For starters, the reelection campaign of Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ02) is kicking off a one-day, 8-county bus tour on March 29th. It all starts with a kick off rally at 8:00 a.m. in Ocean City followed up by a host of stops and wrapping up in Egg Harbor Township.
That’s what Save Jersey sources in Ocean County are saying about the chances of councilman, dentist, and former rear admiral Mo Hill mounting a successful convention floor challenge to the screening committee-backed candidate to succeed Jon Runyan, Tom MacArthur.
Their logic is compelling regardless of whether it ultimately holds true…
He rolled out the backing of Lacey Township’s GOP committee on Thursday and, this morning, announced the support of Point Pleasant.
“As we continue to try and recover from Sandy and improve the economy, we are confident that Tom will be an asset in Congress on both fronts,” read a joint statement issued by Club President Tom Szymanski, GOP Municipal Chairman William Hoey, Council President Bob Sabosik, Councilwoman Toni DePaola, Councilman John Wisniewski, Councilman Bill Borowsky and Councilman Joe Furmato. “Tom will have our votes at the March 19th Ocean County Republican Convention and our full support in both the June Primary Election and November General Election. We look forward to working with Tom as the next Representative from the 3rd Congressional District.”
New Jersey Republicans aren’t accustomed to competitive primaries. The closest we’ve seen in recent history was back in 2005 (the first statewide race in which your Blogger-in-Chief was eligible to vote) when Doug Forrester edged by Bret Schundler by less than 5-points in a very crowded field.
I recently met up with North Arlington native and Bergen County Freeholder Candidate, Brian Fitzhenry, to discuss the current state of Bergen County and his campaign for Freeholder. Mr. Fitzhenry is no stranger to Bergen County politics, Save Jerseyans, as he ran an extremely formidable campaign for the District 36 State Senate seat in 2013; we expect no less of him in 2014, Save Jerseyans.
We first spoke of the state of Bergen County and his vision for the constituents of New Jersey’s most populous county should he become elected freeholder in November. “We tax families and businesses out of Bergen County,” said Fitzhenry, referring the Democrat-dominated freeholder board. “I have a business here, and we need to do more to attract new businesses into Bergen County and help the ones that are already here. Bergen County also needs to be more affordable for the residents.”
Steve Lonegan is not going to win the GOP nomination to replace the retiring Congressman Jon Runyan in New Jersey’s third congressional district.
The party bosses in Ocean and Burlington Counties that comprise the district have settled on endorsing former Randolph Mayor Tom MacArthur. Ocean County Republicans with the stones to defy Chairman George Gilmore are lining up behind Toms River Councilman Maurice Hill, a retired Navy rear admiral. If Lonegan continues to compete for the nomination in the party conventions, he’s likely to come in third in Ocean and second in Burlington. Lonegan does not have an organization to compete with the Ocean and Burlington Republican organization should he run a primary race against MacArthur.
Lonegan should stop fighting fellow Republicans in Ocean and Burlington and come north to Monmouth and Middlesex where we need his considerable talent. If Monmouth GOP Chairman John Bennett and Middlesex GOP Chairman Sam Thompson have not been on the phone pleading with Lonegan to take on ObamaCare author Frank Pallone in the 6th Congressional district, they are missing an opportunity.
As anticipated, Save Jerseyans, the Burlington County Republican Organization sought to kill Steve Lonegan’s congressional candidacy in its cradle on Monday by giving his primary opponent, Tom MacArthur, the county line only 24 hours after we learned that Ocean County had done the same.
“Our Screening Committee, as well as our Republican Municipal Chairs, are proud to enthusiastically endorse Tom MacArthur for Congress in the Third District and will forward our recommendation to the full County Committee for their consideration,” said Screening Committee Chairman Steve Solomon in a Monday evening press release.
“Not only were we deeply impressed by Tom’s experience of helping to create jobs and prosperity for his employees and their families, but also by his vision for the future of our party and our nation,” continued Solomon. “Tom’s compelling story as a self-made success and someone who has dedicated his life to giving back to those in need made him stand out among the candidates we interviewed. We believe he will make an excellent Congressman for the people of Burlington County and the people of the Third District.”
A MacArthur victory is significant because it virtually guarantees him the line in both Ocean and Burlington counties and, with the lines, cements his front-runner status in the race to succeed Jon Runyan as CD3′s representative in Congress.
It also likely sets up a 2-way contest; only former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan (or another millionaire like Chris Isola who filed to formally explore a campaign) could hope to compete without premiere ballot position. Lonegan will stay in but no spin can hide his camp’s disappointment; the veteran political combatant now faces a hostile Burlington organization without any help from the potent Ocean outfit of Chairman George Gilmore. Name recognition is the only major advantage available to him at this juncture, though the latter could prove a double-edged sword among some base voters who dismiss Lonegan as a perennial candidate.
How many CD3 voters fit into that category? And will MacArthur present a credible alternative who can take advantage of Lonegan fatigue to the extent it exists? We’ll know for sure approximately three months from today… but why wait to speculate? Vote for your preference – Lonegan or MacArthur – in our online poll below the fold…
It’s finally convention season, Save Jerseyans, and the first GOP committee members are beginning to select their preferred choices for the June Primary.
Today it was Union County’s turn. In one of the only contested races, delegates assembled in Union Township on a cold but sunny March day voted to back Rich Pezzullo for the U.S. Senate nomination.
Pezzullo reportedly ended up with 75 votes; Professor Murray Sabrin landed 33, former FBI agent Robert Turkavage earned 31 votes, and concrete businessman Brian Goldberg secured 13. A fifth candidate, Jeffrey Bell, submitted his letter of intent but did not appear.
Some Republicans had hoped that Ciattarelli, who certainly looks the part and is a proven vote-getter in a less-than-deep red district, would apply his considerable resources to give Cory Booker (D-Twitter) a run for his money. Sources report his major concern was the effect a federal bid – and hypothetical job in Washington – might have on his young family.
Moving forward: our discussions with the other hopefuls are already underway. Click here to watch this week’s interview with candidate Brian Goldberg.
Who will replace Jon Runyan on the ballot this November, Save Jerseyans? Republican decision-making is truly coming down to the wire as primary-related deadlines are fast-approaching.
A major milestone occurs this Saturday when Ocean County’s screening committee will meeting with candidates and decide who deserves their endorsement in June, the outcome of which renders the March convention a fait accompli for the victor.
Lured by the appeal of an open seat in a likely favorable federal cycle, approximately one-and-a-half dozen individuals have expressed interest, formally or otherwise, in pursuing the Republican nomination this year including a former Marine platoon commander and a sitting Assemblyman. Save Jersey sources in CD3, however, say three names comprise the serious contenders for Ocean County’s coveted line…
We’re kicking off our Election 2014 Senate coverage by sharing my interview with Brian D. Goldberg, Save Jerseyans, a businessman originally from Monmouth County who made his money in the concrete business and who now hopes to bring private sector common sense to Capitol Hill.
He’s one of five GOP nominee hopefuls including former U.S. candidate and Reagan campaign staffer Jeffrey Bell, Monmouth businessman Rich Pezzullo, retired FBI agent Robert “Turk” Turkavage, and Ramapo Professor Murray Sabrin.
Dr. Aleita Eck is moving to solidify support behind her bid to replace the retiring Rush Holt (D-NJ12) today, Save Jerseyans, by announcing that both Mary Chyb, Former State Committeewoman and North Brunswick GOP Chair, and Roslyn Kane, the Monroe GOP Chair, have decided to formerly endorse her candidacy
“I am happy to add my name to the list of Dr. Eck’s supporters,” said Chairwoman Kane. “As a doctor, businesswoman, selfless servant of the poor and needy, mother, wife, and leader, Dr. Eck is the kind of individual we need in Washington. She demonstrates daily that the values we espouse as Republicans, when put into practice, yield results. She has my support and I look forward to helping her win in November.”