Neptune City teen’s vote counts. Special election set for council race

Michaela O'Brien, photo via facebook

Michaela O’Brien, photo via facebook

Michaela O’Brien’s vote has been counted, 84 days after she cast it, and as a result the Neptune City Council election between Democrat Michael Skudera and Republican Richard Pryor is tied at 602-602.  A special election between the two currently former councilmen will be held on March 22.

O’Brien, an 18 year old Brookdale student voting for the first time on November 3, voted by provisional ballot when her name did not appear in the poll book at the Neptune City First Aid Building.  O’Brien turned 18 in August and registered to vote on or about October 13, according to the election contest complaint file by Jason Sena, Esq on behalf of Pryor.

The Board of Elections disqualified O’Brien’s ballot because they could not verify the last four digits of her Social Security number with the Social Security Administration, according to the complaint.  The four digits O’Brien entered on her Voter Registration Application and her provisional ballot match the last four digits on her Social Security card.

The official and certified vote count was 602-601, in favor in Skudera after a recount.

Sena told MMM that the matter, which was scheduled for trial on Friday, was settled by Pryor and Skudera on Wednesday when there were no facts to dispute at trail and that O’Brien’s vote should be counted.  Judge Katie A. Gummer ordered the Board of Elections to open the ballot, which was cast for Pryor.  The Board of Election was able to verify O’Brien’s social security number this time, according to Sena.

Pryor, who was an incumbent running for reelection,  gave up his office when his term expired on December 31.  Skudera was sworn in on January 1st and vacated the office yesterday when the election was declared a tie.

“I’ve always said that every vote counts—I prove it,” O’Brien said in a phone interview last month.

Posted: January 27th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County | Tags: , , , , , | 8 Comments »

8 Comments on “Neptune City teen’s vote counts. Special election set for council race”

  1. Best of luck, Rick! said at 5:58 pm on January 28th, 2016:

    get out there. and win that seat back for the GOP and the town!

  2. Common Sense Townie said at 11:24 am on January 31st, 2016:

    So let me get this straight – the council an bigot Bob Brown are SO terrified of ONE Democrat on the council that they are trotting out and USING a young girl to tip the vote, now? I highly doubt this would be happening if the vote was in Pryor’s favor.

    The GOP Council and mayor of this town are the most ineffective, lazy “leadership” ever seen.

  3. We Like Mike! said at 1:47 pm on February 1st, 2016:

    Mike Skudera is just what the borough needs, a fresh perspective! I sure hope he wins in this special election. He’s a hard worker and an honest man with a great family. I feel bad he’s been through this circus with the republican establishment. Let it go boys!

    We Like Mike!

  4. Runner girl said at 5:32 am on February 5th, 2016:

    EVERY vote should count! This was this lady’s 1st time voting..It should count!The vote WAS in Pryor’s favor!!

  5. Go Rick! said at 5:43 am on February 5th, 2016:

    Wow! I cannot believe the last two comments.

    First of all when Michael Skudera lost the election by one vote it was the democrats that challenged the election results first! At NO time was anyone telling him to “Let it go boys!”.

    Second of all – are you saying Michaela O’Brien’s vote shouldn’t be included JUST because it wasn’t favorable to your choice of candidate? Yes folks let’s allow a man to “steal” an election instead of winning it fair and square. It was a county judge that did not make a decision on O’Brien’s vote UNTIL well after the swearing in ceremony. Acoording to a previous Monmouth Musings article, Mr Pryor contested the results back on Dec 7th.

    Last I knew on Jan 1st a winner had not been officially declared. Why Michael Skudera CHOSE to be sworn in when the election was never certified is beyond me. UNLESS it was so now he can play the role of victim and look for sympathy votes. He has the “Woe is me” attitude practically accusing the town officials of taking the title away from him” “I lost, I won, I lost again, I won again, I was sworn in on Jan 1st and now it’s tied” “I have to go up against a machine” “Now I have to go against the establishment” PLEASE – sounds like a small child’s whinings.

    WHAT has Michael Skudera done for the town of Neptune City? The amount of time he spends at events in nearby Asbury Park shows his true colors. He’s not here for Neptune City – JUST like his former running mate Councilwoman Pamela Renee – he just aspires to be in politics. ALL the other council members have been involved in the community one way or another over the years and are home owners – including Rick Pryor. They put their money where their mouth is – they invested in Neptune City!

  6. Every vote counts said at 6:05 am on February 5th, 2016:

    Glad that her vote counted. How could I teach my child every vote counts if it hadn’t?

  7. Josephine Morey said at 8:27 am on February 5th, 2016:

    Regardless of the outcome, how anyone can dissuade another citizen from their civic duty is beyond me. To say that Michaela O’Brien’s vote has proven a valuable lesson to us all is an understatement. It has proved beyond a doubt that every vote does count. So next time you have the opportunity to extend your right of “We the People”, make sure you do, instead of coming up with excuses as to why you cannot get to the polls. We have been following this story very closely at Neptune High School, and I for one am indebted to Michaela for proving that any one of us can make a difference if we get out and vote.

  8. Tully Blanchard said at 11:26 pm on February 5th, 2016:

    Go Rick! wrote: “WHAT has Michael Skudera done for the town of Neptune City? The amount of time he spends at events in nearby Asbury Park shows his true colors.”

    The above comment exemplifies the problem of artful smear in American politics — particularly when the victim is an upstanding person, who takes great pride in serving his community, and is so well-liked by everyone he comes in contact with. And if he wasn’t “there” for Neptune City, he certainly would not have fought so hard to earn a council seat in town.

    Indeed, Mr. Skudera has spent time in neighboring Asbury Park — participating in events that not only effect local communities, but the entire Garden State as well. Mr. Skudera rallied against drilling for oil in the Atlantic Ocean with a sitting US Congressman and 2 sitting US Senators. He also proudly walked in the 2015 Pride Parade with my son as an ally of the LGBT community. Mr. Skudera should be praised for being such a positive and pro-active representative for the people of Neptune.

    Engaging in character attacks against an hard-working, dedicated, and well-liked fellow American should inspire us all to better represent and serve our local communities.