By Paul Kanitra
Let me explain how political endorsements usually work. Someone’s press secretary gets together with someone else’s press secretary and they come up with some very politically correct quotes that they put into a polished release and distribute out with a nice logo on it. This is definitely not that.
Republicans across the country, and especially in New Jersey are at a major crossroads. One section of the party calls everyone who hasn’t sworn an unwavering blood oath to our outgoing President a “RINO” and another section of the party wants to pretend that President Trump and his supporters never existed, nor the underlying reasons for why he was elected in the first place. It’s self-defeating insanity.
The ONLY viable path forward for us as a party is to have both sides come together and understand the good aspects of each other’s positions, while expelling the bad ones.
I wasn’t planning on making an endorsement in the primary election for Governor. Both Doug Steinhardt and Jack Ciattarelli are good friends. But with Doug now out of the race and our party needing unity more than ever, I think it’s an important time to step up.
We need a voice that’s going to unite the two sides of the party. Someone who can recognize the influx of blue collar, hard working, rule following Republicans who simply are tired of cancel culture and being told they are “privileged” while they struggle to make ends meet.
Someone who’s also skilled enough politically to navigate all the crazy spending and unfair double standards coming out of Trenton.
That guy is Jack Ciattarelli. It’s impossible to not like Jack when you meet him. He treats everyone in the room like they’re just as important as anyone else. I’ve watched him spend 30 minutes talking to political nobodies while powerful County Chairmen wait over his shoulder. He cares enough to remember too. He remembers your name, your issues, your friends and your family.
This past crazy year, every time I was on TV or the radio tackling tough issues as Mayor, I could count on a text or call from Jack to offer advice or just empathize with me. I know countless other young leaders across the State that have similar experiences with him. It showed me a lot.
Republicans need leaders with emotion and depth. Democrats have been killing us by putting up candidates that strike an emotional chord with voters. We need to do the same. Jack is the guy that can fill that void.
Jack grew up in working class Raritan. He’s a success now, because he worked his ass off to get where he is. That’s the foundation of Republicanism. Hard work. His experience can bridge both sides of this fracturing party, he can reach out to Independents and he can help make us more viable in the long run.He’s got my vote (and Alora’s) and I hope you give him yours too.