The print edition of the Asbury Park Press has an six paragraph article today about the Republican and Democratic races for County Chair.
“Pair look to replace Oxley as county GOP chairman” is the headline of the piece which appears on page 3 of the local Monmouth section of the paper. The lead is “Former Senate President John O. Bennett III and Christine Giordano Hanlon, a behind-the-scenes political organizer, both hope to succeed Joseph W. Oxley as chairman of the Monmouth County Republican Committee
The article explains that GOP Chairman Joe Oxley has been nominated to the state Superior Court and reports that he said he is stepping down to spend more time with his 10 week-old daughter, Margaux.
Bennett received one paragraph that said he would officially notify party officials of his candidacy today and noted his position with the Dilworth Paxon law firm. Bennett did not elaborate due to a recent death in his family, the APP said.
Hanlon received two paragraphs on her background.
The last paragraph mentioned the Democratic race between Marlboro Democratic Chairman Frank LaRocca and Long Branch publisher Vin Gopal.
It is unusual that the APP would cover an internal party race. They did not even mention the January election for Freeholder until days after Serena DiMaso was already sworn in to replace Rob Clifton.
Given the extreme, to put it mildly, coverage that Bennett received from the APP in 2003 over his double billing of Marlboro Township while serving as the municipal attorney, many Republican leaders have been worried about the impact a Bennett chairmanship would have on the party and the coverage it receives from the press.
The APP’s coverage of Bennett’s double billing his widely believed to the cause of his 2003 loss of his 12th district Senate seat, the losses of his running mates seats in the Assembly, and ultimately the exile to minority status of the Republican Party in Trenton which has continued to this day.
MMM will update this piece with a link the story on app.com, if and when it gets posted on the pay site.