Winners and Losers of 2013, Part One


January 2013 seems like a long time ago.

The years are supposed to go by faster as we get older.  2013 missed the memo, at least for me. President Obama’s second Inauguration and Freeholder John Curley’s second swearing in seem like a long time ago.

Selikia Joshia Gore started us off in 2013 with a timeless call to renew our humanity; the ongoing struggle of saints and sinners to love one another regardless of standing, status or creed.   It is a winning message that works only by embracing our failures without resigning to them.

The Governor. Governor Chris Christie started the year lambasting House Speaker John Boehner and the Congressional Republicans for playing politics with Superstorm Sandy aid and ended the year as the front runner for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. In between he built a bi-partisan and multi-cultural coalition that reelected him with over 60% of the vote in Blue Jersey.   Christie had the best year of any politician in America.  Only Pope Francis and Vladimir Putin had better years globally.

U.S. Senator Bob Menendez.  Menendez started the year on the losers list. Embroiled in a sandal of allegations of his cavorting with teenaged girls in the Dominican Republic and using the powers of his office to benefit the businesses of the donor who arranged the party, speculation was that he would resign as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, if not his Senate seat.  Menendez seems to have survived an FBI investigation into his relationship with Dr. Saloman Melgan unscathed.

At the end of the year, Menendez’s position seems secure. He is the leading, and most powerful, critic of President Obama’s foreign policy.   His approval ratings are net positive 22 points in the last Monmouth University Poll. He got engaged to be married earlier this month.

Given where he started, Menendez may have had the best 2013 of any New Jersey public figure, other than Christie.

The Gramiccionis.  The Wall Township power couple had a very good year.  In March, Christopher, the Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor and U.S. Naval Reserve Officer, received orders to report for a 9 month tour of active duty in Afghanistan effective in August.  Those orders were canceled in July, keeping Chris on the job fighting crime in Monmouth County and home for the holidays.  Deborah was appointed by Governor Christie to be the Deputy Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.  The job pays $289,657.

Monmouth County Republicans.  Sheriff Shaun Golden, Freeholder Director Tom Arnone and Deputy Director Serena DiMaso were always expected to be reelected on the strength of their records and due to the fact that Monmouth County Independent voters usually vote Republican.  They make the winners list by virtue of fact that they ran as if they were behind, not taking any votes for granted.  More importantly, they ran a positive campaign based on reducing spending, holding the line on taxes, and improving services, in the face of yet another negative campaign on the part of the Monmouth County Democrats.

Monmouth County’s Legislative Delegation.  Each member of Monmouth County’s Legislative Delegation deserves more recognition than space will allow.

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Posted: December 28th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County, New Jersey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Thirteen 2013 Takeaway Numbers

By Matt Rooney, SaveJersey.com

We had a very busy year, Save Jerseyans, but if there are 13 stats from 2013 that will stay with me into 2014, these ones are at the top of my list:

13.   1,300,000,000 – how much more money the State of New Jersey decided to spend next year over this year.

12.   30,000 – about how many New Jersey and New York residents are still homeless 14-months after Hurricane Sandy made landfall.

11.   10,000,000,000 – the funds, representing only 1/5 of the total Sandy federal aid package, that have been disbursed to date.

10.   3,300 – the current rough number of New Jerseyans who have created an account at Healthcare.gov.

9.   800,000 – the approximate number of New Jersey residents who started 2013 with a health care plan that, thanks to Obamacare, will be cancelled by 2014.

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Posted: December 23rd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: New Jersey | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Thirteen 2013 Takeaway Numbers

Greg’s List: Things to do in Monmouth County this weekend, May 31-June 2, 2013 #STTS


Monmouth County Post CardBy Greg Kelly


Friday, May 31


• Natural Horsemanship Demonstration (Middletown) – MORE INFO

• Monmouth County Beaches Guide 2013 – MORE INFO

Happy at NJ Repertory Theatre (Long Branch) – MORE INFO

• Red Bank Riverfest Food & Music Festival – MORE INFO

Jon Rakestraw Concert (Belmar) – MORE INFO

Requiem by Monmouth Civic Chorus (Red Bank) – MORE INFO

The Stars of Rock ‘n’ Roll at Count Basie Theatre (Red Bank) – MORE INFO

• Paint the Town Pink 2013 – MORE INFO

• Toyota Summernationals at Raceway Park (Englishtown) – MORE INFO

• Ballroom, Latin, Swing & Salsa Dancing (Sea Girt) – MORE INFO

Tom Keifer at The Stone Pony (Asbury Park) – MORE INFO


*     *     *SeastreakBaseball


Saturday, June 1


• Red Bank Riverfest Food & Music Festival – MORE INFO

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Posted: May 30th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: #STTS, Greg Kelly, Greg's List, Monmouth County, Things to do in Monmouth County | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Greg’s List: Things to do in Monmouth County this weekend, May 31-June 2, 2013 #STTS