Last night, shortly after arriving at the Camden County Republican Committee’s Fall Reception, my phone exploded with text messages with links to stories about George Norcross having been “monitored” by the feds.
South Jersey Republicans were excited about this news. CD1 Republican candidate Paul Dilks took to social media with a message, “Breaking news... Reign of Norcross coming to an end...time for change. Draining the swamp wasn’t enough in South Jersey, we have to dredge the sludge! South Jersey needs a leader, not a boss!” He included a link to the Politico version of the story.
For some reason South Jersey Republicans get excited when they hear the name George Norcross. Well, here’s a newsflash for you. Voters don’t care! His name is not on the ballot.
I know for a fact Camden County Republicans have polled his name in the past. The name George Norcross, while recognized, didn’t move voters. I polled his name for a candidate once. Nothing!
So what? His phone calls were monitored by the feds. In New Jersey it is a fact of life that people who play hardball politics might end up on an audio recording somewhere. I personally know, both Democrats and Republicans, who have been under some type of scrutiny and did nothing illegal.
That time I released expunged police records and a freeholder had me charged criminally after the case was dismissed my attorney advised me that “people may be listening to your phone calls.” There was that time that close to 15 years ago Al Sullivan of the Hudson Reporter wrote that sources close to me said I was paid a visit from the feds. To my knowledge I am still not at liberty to discuss if that visit happened, so draw your own conclusion, but I never went to prison so I assume that if that visit took place they found I did nothing wrong.
It’s a fact, Norcross plays hardball politics. As Republicans, especially in South Jersey, we don’t like it, he makes it very difficult for us to win, even at the municipal level.
One thing I do know is that Norcross respects those who aren’t afraid to play hardball, too. I know this first hand. There was that time I made his brother Donald Norcross yell at me during a debate back in 2003. The video is still circulating online. I’ve run into both, George and Donald Norcross, and we’ve shared a laugh or two over that incident. Well, maybe pleasant smiles.
You want to beat Norcross? Find an issue that gets an emotional response and ride it hard. Maybe the tax breaks mentioned in the recent Norcross news might help. Taxpayers don’t like rich people getting tax breaks. But the fact someone listened to Norcross’ phone calls isn’t going to win an election.
And, just for fun, I’ll leave you with that video: