In an email sent to his party faithful this evening, Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal spun the Republican Romp in Monmouth County on Tuesday as a victorious holding of ground and claimed a net pick up of 1 municipal seat.
While we haven’t carefully fact checked Gopal’s claims, some of them appear to be laughable. He’s counting a Board of Education seat in Wall Township as a pick up and Mayor-elect Jerry Turning’s uncontested election in Tinton Falls, a non-partisan municipality, as pick up. The Tinton Falls GOP support Turning taking over as mayor of the borough where he has been administrator, after retiring as Police Chief.
Gopal is also not counting Highlands Council President Rebecca Kane’s loss to Republican Mayor Frank Nolan as a defeat, because there are 120 uncounted provisional ballots, even though Kane conceded the race on Tuesday night. Kane would have to get 77% of the provisional votes, assuming they are all ruled valid, in order to gain the 92 votes needed to over take Nolan’s lead.
The text of Gopal’s email is below the fold, for entertainment purposes. Feel free to check his facts and comment accordingly.
In the face of Chris Christie’s re-election, Democrats challenged Republicans vote by vote on the local issues that mattered most to Monmouth taxpayers – and in many cases, we won handily.
With a popular Republican Governor at the top the ballot, this may very well be the high water mark for the GOP in Monmouth – and we still held our ground! Despite the expected “Christie wave”, local Democratic candidates unseated 7 Republicans and 21 Democratic incumbents were re-elected! In fact, we ended with a net gain of +1.
We had big wins – we broke through the all-GOP council in Union Beach, electing two Democrats for the first time in 15 years. A Democrat will take the mayor’s seat in Tinton Falls for the first time since 2005. Democratic incumbents were re-elected throughout the county in tough races.
I want to give special thanks to Vice Chair Mary Foster, Executive Director Joe Grillo, the Monmouth County Democrats staff & interns, including Kelsey Mahan, Mitch Seim, Jon Salonis, Joe Libutti, Danielle Byrne, Deepa Chander, Sarah Mustafa, Jake Schuhardt, Sandy Loefflad and Stephanie Salomonsen for their hard work, passion and dedication. Our incredible lawn sign volunteer Bill Robinson was always there for us, thank you.
Thanks to all of the municipal party chairs for their guidance and perseverance throughout this year – arguably one of the most difficult our party has faced in quite some time.
A special thank you to Congressman Frank Pallone, U.S. Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker, former Freeholders Amy Mallet and John D’Amico, former County Surrogate Pat Bennett, former Monmouth County Democrats Chairman Victor Scudiery and State Committee Members Eric Brophy, Bob Salman, Mayor Mike Ryan, Mike Beson, Vice-Chair Mary Foster, Ava Johnson, Jaimie Gilmartin and Ann Baker for their advice, guidance and support of our candidates this year.
Most of all, thank YOU – the activists, volunteers, phone bankers, door knockers, donors and candidates that ran terrific races from Highlands to Allentown, from Aberdeen to Manasquan.
I’ve never been more proud to lead an organization with the most dedicated people working in county politics. I’m fortunate and humbled to consider you colleagues, co-workers, and most importantly, dear friends. From the bottom of my heart – Thank you!
Now we look to the future…
We will be back in 2014, with Senator Cory Booker and Congressman Frank Pallone leading our ballot. As your Chairman, I promise to continue to work hard for you and, with your help, continue to grow the Democratic Party in every town in Monmouth County and promote those shared ideals we champion every day.
Vin Gopal Chairman, Monmouth County Democrats www.monmouthdems.org
PS: I am pleased to provide you below of a town by town report of the Democratic races of 2013 with special thanks to so many of our candidates who ran tough races while representing the Democratic Party message.
For SHERIFF, Ruben Scolavino ran a great campaign on the issues of public safety, gang violence and drug enforcement that mattered to Monmouth County residents.
FREEHOLDER candidates Brian Froelich and Larry Luttrell ran a campaign on the issues. They were up on TV and radio promoting the Democratic Party message of fighting for taxpayers and garnered more than 40% of the vote, convincing tens of thousands of Christie voters to cross the ballot to vote for them.
Our LEGISLATIVE CANDIDATES, Dr. William Field, Jimmy Esposito, Joe Marques, Allison Friedman, Matt Morehead, Ray Dothard, Larry Furman, Nick Nellegar, Dr. Michael Brantley, Ed Zipprich & Kevin McMillan all did an outstanding job against entrenched Republican incumbents. They should be proud of the campaigns they ran! They made their Republican challengers spend money and resources they thought they never would in a “Christie year” and forced them to take positions on the issues that matter to you and me.
In ALLENTOWN, Democrats won seats, defeating two long-time Republican incumbents. Democrat Robert Schmitt and Independent Madeline Gavin, who ran with our support, beat two Republican incumbents. They now join Democratic Councilwoman Angela Anthony to lead a fight for council majority in 2014. Congratulations to regional Democratic Leader & Upper Freehold Democratic Chairwoman Debbie Henderson for her extraordinary support in Allentown.
In INTERLAKEN, with the help of Municipal Chairman & Councilman Bob Napoli, Democrats picked up a 2nd seat on the governing body despite Governor Christie winning the town with nearly 80% of the vote. Democrats are breaking through in Republican strongholds.
IN SPRING LAKE HEIGHTS, Democrats increased their seats with Thomas Vorbach’s re-election and Thomas P O’Brien’s election. Congratulations to Tom and Tom on an outstanding campaign, competing in one of the most difficult towns in the county with a popular Republican Governor at the top of the ticket.
In TINTON FALLS, A Democrat has returned to the Mayor’s seat. Congratulations Mayor-elect Jerry Turning! Mayor-elect Turning joins Democratic Councilman Steve Schertz on the governing body.
In UNION BEACH, Democrats won 2 council seats for the first time in 15 years. Lawrence Mascilak and Jeff Williams were elected in the Bayshore town that Christie won 3 to 1. Congratulations to Chairman Ken Connors and the Union Beach Democrats on this major victory. Special thanks to Nick Williams, Jeff’s father and one of our executive board members for his day to day guidance in making this campaign successful.
In ABERDEEN, Mayor Fred Tagliarini was re-elected to another 4 year term, bringing along council candidates Margaret Montone and Joseph Martucci, this despite Governor Christie winning the town by a more than 2 to 1 margin. Congratulations to Chairman& Councilman Greg Cannon on running an excellent campaign. Democrats will continue maintain a 7-0 majority in this critical Bayshore town.
In BELMAR, Democratic Councilmembers Brian McGovern and Janis Keown-Blackburn were overwhelmingly re-elected, even though Governor Christie carried the town with more than 75% of the vote. Congratulations to Mayor Matt Doherty and Chairman Luis Pulido on their outstanding organization there.
In FREEHOLD BOROUGH, Democratic Councilmembers Kevin A Kane and Jaye Sims were overwhelmingly re-elected in a town Governor Christie also carried. Congratulations to Campaign Manager Annette Jordan and the entire Freehold Borough Democrats organization.
In LAKE COMO, Democratic incumbents Douglas E Witte and Patricia A Tzibrouk were overwhelmingly re-elected. Congratulations to Mayor & Municipal Chairman Mike Ryan on an outstanding job done.
In MANASQUAN, Democratic Councilmembers Owen McCarthy and Ed Donovan were re-elected despite Governor Christie winning more than 75% of the vote in town. Congratulations to Chairman & Councilman Mike Mangan on running an outstanding campaign.
In MARLBORO, Democrats Jeff Cantor, Scott Metzger and Carol Mazzola were comfortably re-elected despite Governor Christie winning the town with 73% of the vote. Congratulations to Chairman & Councilman Frank LaRocca on running an excellent campaign and to Mayor Jon Hornik for leading an extraordinary organization.
In NEPTUNE, Mayor Eric Houghtaling and Committeeman Randy Bishop crushed their opposition by a 2 to 1 margin. Congratulations to Chairman Jim Mowczan on the fine campaign they ran.
In RED BANK, Councilwoman Kathy Horgan was re-elected. The second seat is currently in question where Councilwoman Sharon Lee is within a handful of votes. Democrats currently have 7-0 majority on the governing body and have issued a recount for the 2ond seat. Governor Christie won the town comfortably, making this a more challenging year for Democrats.
In ROOSEVELT, Peggy Malkin and Michelle Hermelee were both successfully re-elected. Congratulations to Chairwoman Ann Baker on running a great race. The town also delivered for Barbara Buono, giving her a decisive victory in Roosevelt over Chris Christie.
In ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS, Edward F Colelli and Evelyn M D’Amato ran a strong campaign but fell short by roughly 200 votes in a town Governor Christie won by more than a 2 to 1 margin. Democrats still have 2 seats on the governing body and are preparing for a 2014 battle.
In EATONTOWN, Jennifer L Piazza and Meir Araman ran a great race but fell short in a town that Governor Christie won by a more than 2 to 1 margin. Democrats still have the mayor’s seat and two council seats in Eatontown.
In FARMINGDALE, Carly Immen, Beau Byrtus and Jan Zientek, ran a great race. But in a town where Governor Christie won with nearly 80% of the vote, Carly, Beau and Jan lost by only 25 to 50 votes. Farmingdale Democrats will be back in force in 2014.
In HAZLET, Cliff Moore and Audrey Tyler worked hard to try to unseat 2 Republican incumbents but were defeated by less than 150 votes in another town Governor Christie won by a more than 2 to 1 margin. Democrats still hold the mayor’s seat and a Democratic majority in Hazlet. Cliff and Audrey will be back!
In HIGHLANDS, Council President Becky Kane is in a tight race, currently behind by a few points to Mayor Frank Nolan. An independent candidate, who ran to benefit the Republicans, garnered 14% of the vote, almost all votes that would have gone to Becky. Democrats still hold every seat on the council and the governing body is all Democrats except for the mayor’s seat. More than 120 provisional ballots still need to be counted.
In KEYPORT, Councilman Joe Sheridan challenged Republicans for the Mayor’s seat but fell short. Daniel Neff and Victoria Mariocca lost by less than 100 votes in their attempt to knock off Republican incumbents in a town Governor Christie won by a 2 to 1 margin. Democrats still hold a 4 to 2 majority in Keyport.
In MANALAPAN, Ryan Urgo, Dr. Ayesha Chaudhary and David Goldstein ran a strong campaign for township committee but lost due to an onslaught of negative attacks from the Republicans. Manalapan Democrats will be back in force in 2014!
In FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP, Ken Sullivan ran a strong race against Republican Mayor Barbara McMorrow, helping to set a foundation for future races. In HOLMDEL, Karen Strickland and Patricia Mathis worked hard to unseat Republicans in the face of the Christie wave of winning Holmdel with 75% of the vote. Karen and Patricia pushed a message of good government and transparency for Holmdel residents. In HOWELL, Cochise Doucette represented the Democratic platform, running a strong campaign for councilman-at-large. In MATAWAN, Joe Altomonte and Bonnie Krause ran a good campaign but fell short. Democratic Councilwoman Kim Daly is still representing the party on the governing body where Democrats will be back in 2014. In MIDDLETOWN, Linda Baum and Pat Olsen ran a campaign on transparency and fiscal responsibility. Unfortunately, Governor Christie’s 3 to 1 win in Middletown made it difficult for Middletown Democrats to overcome. In RUMSON, Michael Steinhorn and Phil Wagner ran a good campaign on ending the all GOP rule in Rumson. In UPPER FREEHOLD, Flo Foley ran a strong campaign to also end the GOP rule in town. Flo did a great job spreading the Democratic Party message. In WEST LONG BRANCH, Mary Bodner gave the Republicans a run for their money with the start of a growing West Long Branch Democratic organization.
* We’d like to thank Senator Barbara Buono and Milly Silva for representing our party with integrity, vision and honor. Few were willing to take on the most popular Republican Governor in the country, and they did. Many communities around the state supported the Buono/Silva ticket, including Montclair and our own Asbury Park, which gave the Buono/Silva ticket more than 70% of the vote. She also won Essex county with more than 61% of the vote.
* Democrats held both houses in the New Jersey state legislature, despite Governor Christie’s win.
* A Democrat won the mayor’s seat and all council seats in Brick Township – the heart of Ocean County. Brick is the 13th largest municipality in New Jersey. Congratulations Mayor-Elect John Ducey!
* State Question 2 to increase the minimum wage was approved. Monmouth voters approved the referendum with 54% of the vote! It passed statewide with 61% of the vote.
* The City of Asbury Park, with 75% of the vote, voted to move their local elections to November with staggered terms. This will increase voter turnout while saving money for Asbury Park taxpayers.
* Congratulations to executive board member Eric Brophy, top vote-getter in his election for Wall Township Board of Education. Holmdel Dems member Mike Sockol also was top vote-getter in his race. Shrewsbury Dems member Carolyn Barber knocked on doors and wrote letters to residents to win a seat on the School Board. Long Branch Democrat Avery Grant was also successful in his Board of Ed campaign.
* Democrat Bill DeBlasio was elected Mayor of New York City. It has been 20 years since a Democrat was elected mayor of NYC and Democrats took back the governorship in Virgnia!
Monmouth County Democrats http://www.monmouthdems.org/