Middletown Officials Backing Golden For Chairman

All five members of the Middletown Township Committee have announced that they are backing Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden in his bid to replace John O. Bennett III as Chairman of the Monmouth County Republican Organization.

MTC Group-M

Front, Mayor Stephanie Murray and Deputy Mayor Kevin Settembrino. Rear, Committeemen Tony Fiore, Gerry Scharfenberger and Steve Massell. Photo via MiddletownNJ.org

Mayor Stephanie Murray, Deputy Mayor Kevin Settembrino, and Committee Members Gerry Scharfenberger, Stephen Massell and Tony Fiore, all Republicans, issued a statement through Fiore .

“Sheriff Golden will bring a new energy to our Party and make us even stronger in delivering the best and most efficient county and municipal governments in New Jersey to the people of Monmouth County.

“Shaun has demonstrated a commitment to excellence and innovation while improving the performance of the Sheriff’s Office and controlling costs to the taxpayers on both the county and municipal levels.  We believe his leadership and executive skills will greatly serve Monmouth County residents in a political capacity as well.

“Shaun will move our party forward and is the best person to heal any fractures that have occurred over the years.

“We appreciate the good job that Chairman Bennett has done during his term, but now, we face new challenges as elected officials and political leaders.  We can’t afford to rest on our laurels, but must move forward with fresh eyes and with a renewed commitment to improve our performance for the people we represent and serve.”

Fiore told MMM that the committee members were speaking for themselves, not for the Middletown Republican Organization.  Middletown GOP Chairman Peter Carton is aware of their endorsement, but has yet to speak with Golden or Bennett, Fiore said.


Posted: May 8th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: John Bennett, Monmouth GOP, Shaun Golden | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments »

23 Comments on “Middletown Officials Backing Golden For Chairman”

  1. You got to be kidding...right? said at 12:42 pm on May 8th, 2014:

    “…Shaun has demonstrated a commitment to excellence and innovation while improving the performance of the Sheriff’s Office and controlling costs to the taxpayers on both the county and municipal levels…”

    Really??? What commitment to excellence and innovation has Golden done to improve performance at controlling costs? If I recall, he has hired double-dippers and even had a person placed in a made-up position while he was acting sheriff. I don’t think that comes under “controlling costs.”

  2. Sounds Like said at 1:02 pm on May 8th, 2014:

    The same old broken record tune from Dan Peter’s supporters and old Sage who is still on the losing end of the stick.

    Come on Sage, give it up.

  3. Ummmm, said at 5:45 pm on May 8th, 2014:

    Maybe “controlling costs,” after just opening the 25 million+ dollar new 911 building, needs to come off the campaign flier?? I am much more concerned about: what would he really do differently, who will he surround himself with, and why he thinks he has time for all the craziness that position brings..and, how will it sit when he is up for re- election as sheriff and chairman in two years, in the same year?: he’ll/we’ll get torn apart. Get ready for the cries of conflicts of interest, too political for a Constitutional officer, etc…Really think this all weakens the party. as for Middletown’s officials: other than Gerry, what is their total length of service and what have they done for the county? Just askin’

  4. Do Unto Others said at 6:53 pm on May 8th, 2014:


    Why are you trying to trash Middletown’s officials now?

  5. What Does the BSTPG Have to Say??? said at 7:53 pm on May 8th, 2014:

    This should be interesting.

  6. Middletown County Committee Member said at 7:17 am on May 9th, 2014:


    Gerry Scharfenberger: 3 terms on TC. Former Mayor 4x. Winner of Northern Monmouth Crystal Beacon Award

    Tony Fiore: 2 terms on TC. Former Mayor 2x. Winner of Northern Monmouth Crystal Beacon Award

    Steve Massell: 2 terms on TC. Former Deputy Mayor

    Kevin Settembrino: Starting 2nd Term on TC. Current Deputy Mayor

    Stephanie Murray: Finishing 1st Term and seeking 2nd. Current Mayor and former Deputy Mayor

    I think they have been around quite a bit and have a lot of influence and credibility both in the Bayshore area and in the County. They have all done a fantastic job in Middletown.

  7. Mike Harmon said at 9:39 am on May 9th, 2014:

    Middletown is the best run big town in NJ.
    Grew up there with many family members still living in town.
    With a few exceptions along the way, a very solid governing membership.
    Much of that credit to Chairman Peter Carton who I still see out there putting up signs.
    Unfortunately, to the detriment of other issues, their able talents are often diverted to handle fake Trenton-made issues like COAH.
    By the way, we lost Rich Hughes, the protector of all things, Middletown.

  8. There ya go again, said at 1:02 pm on May 9th, 2014:

    Not trashing when asking- you never seem to understand the difference. Never criticized their town- wondering what they have done for the county org.- don’t see them out and about much, or in HQ when county volunteers have been needed over those years, as the largest town, that’s all.. And, what their reasoning is to dump John, that is a question. (And, why SO sensitive/ defensive right away,you bright “young Turks?”- is that how your constituents are responded to,when they are asking questions, as well?)

  9. CountyWork said at 7:25 am on May 10th, 2014:

    Some people should really focus more on their county job than county politics.

    When the our Chairman gave credibility to the BTPG, the all of the challengers came out of Middletown and not Freehold. How did the Middletown Township officials respond? With 80+ percent of the primary vote going for Shaun, Tom and Serena. The same for the LD 13 candidates.

    As a Middletown County Committee member I have never seen Chairman Bennett come to a Middletown fundraiser or function. Shaun Golden? Doesn’t miss one. I wonder if it’s because there is no chance for legal work?

    For your information, Middletown has it’s own HQ and provides county support from there. I have volunteered many nights making calls for the Middletown TC and the County Freeholders. Must be a slow time in the purchasing dept these days.

  10. Well said said at 7:51 am on May 10th, 2014:

    County work. I have never seen John Bennett in Middletown and even need someone to point him out to me at county events. Peter Carton has built a phenomenal team and they always produce year after year from the local level up to the top of the ticket. Look at the numbers they brought out for Christie from the Middletown headquarters. I know other towns that would kill for such an organization. For John to have ignored the town the way he has is not only wrong, but politically foolish.

  11. Aghhhh, The Unethical behavior of Sheriff Golden Rears its Ugly Head--Again said at 9:38 am on May 10th, 2014:

    Someone has raised the issue before that politics and law enforcement combine for an unsavory mix. Just look at former disgraced Middlesex County Sheriff and County Chairman Joe Spicuzzo. I believe he is currently in prison for corruption charges.

    As for our own Shaun Golden, well what can I say? The betrayal to John Bennett is disgusting. John has been loyal to Shaun by raising money in the past for Shaun’s run at Sheriff. This despite the fact that as the county’s top law enforcement officer, Shaun has employed his friend in a make-believe position–yes– make-believe as in fake position in the sheriff’s department, in order to receive a pension AND a county salary.

    As top law enforcement officer, when this vile information was exposedby the press, did Shaun have his friend pay the pension system back–what–about a half-million dollars??? Nope!! He just places him in another job that permits him to simultaneously receive both–without questions asked. This maneuver still doesn’t address the issue of making Shaun’s friend pay back the money to the nearly bankrupt pension system.

    As for Shaun and Bennett: Shaun won’t stab his friends in the back; he will look you in the face, and plunge the knife into your chest!!

    Shame on you Shaun!!

  12. Talk about Something Rearing It's Head Again said at 10:03 am on May 10th, 2014:

    Sage or his friends are back, talking about an issue that is a non issue, otherwise there would have been charges brought.

    And to infer that that Golden would end up like Spicuzzo is just wild eyed, tin foil hat hyperbole.

    Get off the horse there Sage, because it’s about ready to collapse.

  13. Careful, said at 9:10 pm on May 10th, 2014:

    someone starting to sound like the Dems, or worse, jealous little RINO’S..when one thinks they can say who gets to exercise first amendment rights and who doesn’t, all free people are threatened! Thanks for playing…

  14. Old dog, old tricks said at 8:55 am on May 12th, 2014:

    Shaun Golden represents what is right in politics. At the end of the day, what does Golden have to gain? He is not after any legal contracts, he can’t really be in a better job than sheriff. So one would have to ask, what is his reasoning for seeking the chairman position? I believe it is because he has the personality that he can not just sit by and let Bennett keep up his old tricks. First he became chairman, next thing he is administrator of Oceanport. Bennett is still involved with legal work throughout the county and has never promised to give it up. I think the Bennett train has derailed and will crash when the election results come out, unless he bows out gracefully.

  15. Oh, brother, said at 3:05 pm on May 12th, 2014:

    here comes the tried and not-so-true generation- gap argument,again. What does he have to gain? Power, for sure. Being the frontman for his friends in competing law firms, perhaps? With the job being as time-consuming and thankless as it is,one would wonder why he would want to put himself through that, unless it is for the above-mentioned reasons. We will see, as their arguments are made: so far, have heard he will not say who his vice chair will be: anyone want to venture a wild guess?? He “doesn’t like the direction the party is going in,” Really? Raising money and winning are bad directions? Oh, and, we need to be on YouTube, to get young voters? ( we already have Facebook and Twitter accounts)…Wow, there’s are real breakthrough: am sure the young kids will enjoy tuning right into people 40 and above, in their uniforms or business suits, telling them how great they are,and that they need to vote for them? Seriously? If that’s the “new” future plan, we will be sorely lacking, by “Day-Two!”..

  16. @old dog said at 3:59 pm on May 12th, 2014:

    Golden represents what’s right in politics??? Are you kidding me?? He is attempting to embark on a path that would make Boss Hogg blush.

    Lets see: He employes Bennett’s daughter as his chief of staff; he placed one of his friends in a made-up position in the sheriff’s office so his friend can receive a pension and a salary. Not illegal–but certainly unethical, wouldn’t you say??

    And you want this man to have a larger presence in county politics to take care of even more friends, supporters, and family??

    Give me a break. Bennett has supported Shaun—Shaun can be grateful and do likewise!

    Where are this man’s loyalties??????

  17. @ @ old dog said at 5:44 pm on May 12th, 2014:

    Sometimes loyalties go only so far when you see that Bennett has found ways to get around his promise about legal work, yada, yada. Yes, Bennett’s got a few skeletons in the closet.

    And the stuff about the pension gate is just the same old crap that Golden Haters play.

    As you yourself have said there is NOTHING there illegal as far as anyone has found.

    You want to change the ethics rules, by all means go ahead. Otherwise, stop beating dead horses called Jim Sage and Dan Peters.

    God almighty, you guys are like broken records without any basis.

  18. Am sooo DONE reading this bull. said at 11:14 pm on May 12th, 2014:

    @There Ya Go,
    alias Oh Brother,
    alias Ummmm,
    alias See What Happens,
    alias etc., etc., etc.

    Obviously you have no idea at all, how horribly transparent you are on this subject. It’s cringe-worthy.

    If you plan to continue running about trashing every single Republican who endorses Golden over your man Bennett, well, then you’ve really crossed over into madness.

    I feel sorry for you.

  19. No one is forcing anyone to read anything, said at 8:54 pm on May 13th, 2014:

    So, don’t! Assuming and generalizing makes you as transparent and sad as you falsely accuse others of being.. Feel sorrier for you and your little band of nasty, self- righteous, and self-serving elitists.

  20. Do Y'all You Realize said at 10:30 pm on May 13th, 2014:

    It is the POSTERS here creating the animosity and fights. On both sides, shame on you.

    But this is what happens when a bunch of arm chair quarterbacks get in a pissing match without knowing much about the issues.

    My God, ya’ll make me sick.


    Silence Dogood, Redux

  21. MoreMonmouthMusings » Blog Archive » Howell elected officials endorse Golden for Monmouth GOP Chairman said at 4:10 pm on May 15th, 2014:

    […] week the members of the Middletown Township Committee released a similar endorsement of […]

  22. MoreMonmouthMusings » Blog Archive » Bennett’s Undettered By Golden’s Endorsements said at 7:42 pm on May 16th, 2014:

    […] chances for reelection on June 10, despite the endorsements of the municipal elected officials in Middletown and Howell going to his opponent in the GOP Chairman’s race, Sheriff Shaun […]

  23. MoreMonmouthMusings » Blog Archive » Wall Elected Officials Back Golden said at 7:13 pm on May 22nd, 2014:

    […] Wall governing body joins the elected officials of Middletown and Howell in supporting […]