Sunday, June 13, 2010


This coming Tuesday, the Republican County Committee will meet at Colts Neck High School to elect a County Chairperson for the next two years. The Monmouth County Republican Blog wholeheartedly supports the reelection of Chairman Joseph W. Oxley.
Joe may not be the perfect Chairman but he is the best Chairman for our Party at this time. A Chairman must lead, not follow, and Joe has done just that. Contrast with his predecessors and see what I mean.
Prior to six years ago we had a situation where our great Party was on autopilot. Bill Dowd, the Chairman at the time was a near absentee leader who seemingly couldn't be bothered with the minutiae of running a party-in-power. This detachment allowed factions and interests to develop, diluting our Party's strength, and creating fertile ground for the fungus of political corruption. When he finally did exercise authority, he did so in a ham-fisted manner which resulted in a contested primary for Freeholder, and ultimately the replacement of the Chairman.
The new Chairman, Fred Niemann, started with much promise. Conventions were held for the first time, and participation was high. Still, the factions that had developed under the previous chairman were still there and pursued their ends. Additionally and more importantly, fundraising took a dark turn with the establishment of multiple PACs and the acceptance of contributions from the likes of Solomon Dwek and others. After two years, Fred didn't seek reelection and was out.
Enter Adam Puharic. Adam spoke of ending factionalism, but instead chose up sides and participated in it with cheer. He devoted much of his Chairmanship to the divisive pursuit of Freeholder Anna Little and her removal from the Board even if it meant electing a Democrat. During this time we saw the emergence of Alan Moretti, the Monmouth Rastaman, a pro-Adam blogger who's sole purpose was to get Little, including the use of libel. It was also during this time that we began losing seats on the Board of Freeholders, culminating in the Democrats taking control of the Board for a year. Adam didn't run again, and the train wreck that was his Chairmanship was over.
Two years ago, former Sheriff Joe Oxley was unanimously elected as County Chairman and walked into a mess. Our Party was as if a reality show had been taped and left the set behind. Since then, we have regained control of the County, fundraising is up and events are fun again, no longer filled with tension and hate. Joe avoids participation in factions, preferring to let them wither on the vine. And Governor Christie racked up solid majorities here in Monmouth County. Our Party is in a position of strength again.
There is more to be done. While we have made great gains in the towns, we need to do more work on strengthening the locals. The municipalities are the foundation of our strength on the county and state level; they are also the bench for the recruitment of future County and Legislative candidates. The stronger our foundation, the weaker the Democrats'; the deeper our bench, the shallower theirs is. Joe is our best prospect for this and he deserves another term as chairman.

We don't want to dwell on the opposition but something should be said. Howell Chairman John Costigan is seeking Joe's job. John is not a bad guy, but he's just not right for the County Chairmanship. Howell is an important town, second only to Middletown in size. That in itself does not automatically qualify the Howell Chairperson to be County Chair. If so, Norine Kelly would have been County Chair already!
There was a small snafu in Howell this spring. In obtaining signatures for County Committee petitions, John used outdated signature requirement numbers. This resulted in the rejection of the overwhelming majority of petitions by the Township Clerk. While this was an honest error and I'm sure John resolved it by getting most of the seats filled by write-ins in the primary, our County Chairman needs to be ahead of the curve and on top of these things. The Democrats could have wreaked all sorts of havoc in a case like that.
So, Joe Oxley is the one !

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