Howell Incumbents Prevail


John Costigan. Photo by Rhoda Chodosh

John Costigan. Photo by Rhoda Chodosh

Howell Township’s incumbent Council Members Rich Nicastro, Pauline Smith and Bob Walsh beat back a Republican primary challenge from Michelle Flahtery, Allen Kaplan and Matthew Rausmussen on Tuesday.

Monmouth Republican State Committeeman, John Costigan, the GOP municipal chairman, lost his bid to retain his County Committee seat.

Costigan was believed to be behind the challengers.  He told MMM that he was not backing the challengers but he was glad they were running.

Posted: June 4th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Howell | Tags: , , | 17 Comments »

17 Comments on “Howell Incumbents Prevail”

  1. Kathy Baratta said at 1:27 am on June 4th, 2014:

    If this is true then shame on Howell. I can’t think of one single person who has worked harder for the Republican Party – at every level, local and otherwise – than John Costigan. Love him or hate him, no one can argue his having been a front-line soldier in the Party’s political trenches at every election, local, state and national, for more years than he likely wants to remember.

    That he could be voted out of his County Committee seat is illustrative of the beast that is Howell politics. A beast that we now know first seasons the meat before it eats its own.

    Woebetide us all if any part of the Beast is allowed to slouch toward County politics or beyond.

  2. James Hogan said at 6:53 am on June 4th, 2014:

    I agree with Kathy(?).

    I didn’t move to some part of Howell, I moved to Costigan’s district.

  3. Chris said at 7:30 am on June 4th, 2014:

    So Jim, is it you who won his seat then? 🙂

  4. Remember though said at 8:15 am on June 4th, 2014:

    Costigan can still run for municipal chair.

    The question is, should he; considering the mess in Howell; and his deal with Bennett to give it up in lieu of his State Committeeman seat.

    Maybe it is time for fresh and younger leadership.

  5. trouble in marlboro said at 8:59 am on June 4th, 2014:

    he is welcome to move to marlboro and help with the good fight to get rid of the nightmare law firm that runs the town. he is a good man and a hard worker for the party. we would love to have him. republicans spend to much time eating their own. i guess its our nature, we are all business men and women, that are leaders of industry. while a few smarter dems run their mindless masses, that only want free stuff or to feed their law firms . when shawn becomes chair i think we should all get behind him and start pushing back at the dems in every town, and stop allowing republican law firms to play both sides and the middle. pick one side or the other but you cannt have it both ways.

  6. Edith T. Nowels said at 10:57 am on June 4th, 2014:

    Sick and Sinkin’ Society … it Seems! When you care enough to give 500% of yourself to Serve, you become a HUGE THREAT to those, who do nothing, and have no intention of doing anything, except tearing down and destroying! Sorry Sight!

  7. Mike Harmon said at 11:25 am on June 4th, 2014:

    The battle in Howell is one of the most prominent internecine conflicts of recent memory. Painful to many.

    When you agree on 80% of an agenda, don’t concentrate on the 20%.

    People have different way of doing things but Rs should privately agree on a general vision for the future and publicly make it happen.

    Those who won this recent skirmish should remember that John Costigan has been the broad shouldered face of the Howell Republicans for years. Without John, things would be far different in Howell.

    That is because John Costigan has vision and a set of beliefs that he stuck to. He opted for more open space, less development and creative solutions to difficult problems. John has always worked well with County officials and Freeholders.

    Those winners today should reach out to John Costigan and his supporters for the good of Howell and the R party. Remembering the past successes will help you all move forward in the future together.

  8. Tim H said at 3:33 pm on June 4th, 2014:

    Those not from Howell do not know the truth. John is about John. Hard worker yes, but thick-headed and stuck in the past as well. He wants total dictatorial control and pushes anyone out that does not agree with him 150%. The Republican voters in his neighborhood voted for someone else. That is what happens in elections. The usual voter is an average person and not some insider. John had the line and still lost. That says a lot about him and the race. His time has come and gone. He was always a foot soldier and never a general. And that HE, Costigan, was the face of Howell when we have good people like Bill Gotto and Rob Nicastro is scary!

  9. Kathy Baratta said at 5:05 pm on June 4th, 2014:

    Titus Pullo was only a foot-soldier but he was one of only two names Julius Caesar saw fit to include in his written, personal memoirs of his battle campaigns. And no, I am not getting this history from having watched the HBO show. They got it from history.

    And I am not from Howell but having covered it for years as a news reporter, I have probably forgotten more about the town and its politics than you will ever know.

    John Costigan is an ad for the adage that tells us, ‘No good deed goes unpunished.”

    These eager young turks better remember that they too will be ‘old campaigner’s’ one day.

  10. Tim H said at 8:15 pm on June 4th, 2014:

    Kathy, been here for 34 years. Don’t recall you and I think I know my town fairly well having seen it all, raised a family here and so on. Suffice it to say, John Costigan’s time has come and gone as chair. It happens to us all. And this has nothing to do with his age. That is meaningless. He was just not the right person for the job anymore. Maybe you should focus on your own town and not profess to be expert on mine. Bye-bye John. Now the party can move forward and out of 1933. Time for the lines of Gatto and Nicastro to lead us!

  11. Middletowner said at 9:12 pm on June 4th, 2014:

    Tim H, if you weren’t 1 of the 2 readers of Kathy’s blog, it’s unlikely you knew her

  12. Tim H said at 10:22 pm on June 4th, 2014:

    Never heard of her? She had a blog? It is till around? I thought she said she was a reporter? Is she an “R”?

  13. Kathy Baratta said at 12:03 am on June 5th, 2014:


    I am a “U.” And I never owned a blog. I owned an interactive forum website which had over 800 members when I sold it. Unlike a blog, any member could (and did) start discussions on topics ranging from Howell politics to television shows.

    I was a reporter for Greater Media Newspapers until my retirement. I bought the forum, “Howellnj.com” when I stopped covering Howell and sold it when I became bored with it.

    That is the long and short of it.

  14. Tim H said at 9:11 am on June 5th, 2014:

    What paper was Greater Media? Howell Times? What was name of forum?

  15. I wonder said at 9:44 am on June 5th, 2014:

    What Tim H. will do when this campaign is over? He’ll be faced with nothing to copy and paste

  16. "Howell" the Party do W/O Costigan? said at 2:57 pm on June 5th, 2014:

    This is a true shame. I can count on one hand, the number of people who have done more good for the Republican Party than Mr. Costigan. He is always in the trenches doing the hard work, even as an older man. This is what it’s come to in Monmouth County-a select few trying to push good people out for no reason.

  17. @ "Howell" said at 3:18 pm on June 5th, 2014:

    People don’t live forever, Costigan has a State Committeeman position, and maybe he should have worked to train his replacement.

    I understand also that didn’t follow through on a deal with Bennett to step down when he became a State Committeeman. That’s a strike against both Costigan and Bennett for being weak and not enforcing the deal.

    Don’t get me wrong, John deserves the state spot. But there comes a time to step aside and let fresh people move up.

    So, it is not about pushing people out. John didn’t follow through.