PRESS RELEASE: Flanagan Welcomes Another ‘Democrat-Lite’ Candidate To The Race

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Yesterday attorney Stuart Meissner announced he has formed an exploratory committee to consider getting into the 2020 U.S. Senate GOP primary. Today, Tricia Flanagan responded. Her press release follows:

LAWRENCEVILLE – After learning an attorney, Stuart Meissner, announced he has formed an exploratory committee to consider getting into the 2020 U.S. Senate GOP primary announced Republican Senate candidate Tricia Flanagan said, “It looks like you can take the man out of the Democrat party, but you can’t take the Democrat out of the man.”

“While it’s been reported that Stuart Meissner became a Republican in 2016 after contributing $16 to President Donald Trump, one has to wonder exactly how conservative Mr. Meissner is,” Tricia Flanagan said. “As recently as July 5th Meissner took to Twitter to congratulate Melinda Katz on an apparent win in the Queens, NY District Attorney Democratic Primary. Katz, it was reported, ran as a progressive and had the backing of the Democratic Party machine politicians.”

“Unlike Meissner, you can be sure you won’t find me congratulating a Democrat running as a progressive on winning a primary,” Flanagan quipped.

“Unfortunately, if Meissner officially gets into this race he won’t be the only Democrat-lite candidate.” Flanagan explained, “Hirsh Singh comes with his own Democrat-lite credentials going back to June 4, 2009 when he declared his love for Barack Obama in a tweet, ‘Obama’s Cairo Speech was simply beautiful…simply beautiful.’ More recently, Singh showed how he lines up with Phil Murphy. As a candidate for governor Singh sent a tweet, ‘…Really thought you’d love my pro-marijuana legalization and criminal justice reform,’ and during his 2018 congressional campaign he lined up with Murphy on the PSEG bailout, the same PSEG that tried to give $55,000 to a dark money group to South Jersey Democratic party powerbroker George Norcross.”

“I can guarantee you won’t find me doing like Singh and praising Obama or aligning myself with Murphy or Norcross,” Flanagan remarked.

“Their own actions show both, Meissner and Singh, are Democrat-lite candidates. I’m proud to be the only pro-Trump candidate working to build a MAGA majority for our President in this race and look forward to carrying the Republican Party’s banner into the 2020 general election,” Flanagan said.

CD2: This Time The Self-Funder Really Can Self-Fund; Also, I Should Have Checked Before Telling Another Candidate He Couldn’t Afford Me

David Richter & Brian Fitzherbert

David Richter & Brian Fitzherbert

Long before he announced his congressional exploratory committee and before making his candidacy in CD2 official there was a lot of talk in GOP circles about David Richter having the ability to self-fund a run for congress.

I never really cared about how much money someone else earns, but when it comes to Republican candidates I do care about alleged self-funders simply because sometimes it appears, at least with some members of my party, the ability to self-fund is a prerequisite.

In CD2, specifically, I care about talk of a self-funding candidate because, as we all know, many folks talked about the ability of Hirsh Singh to self-fund a congressional campaign last year because they were too stupid to figure out that he couldn’t use his father’s money like he did when he ran for governor. There were many folks unhappy after learning Singh couldn’t self-fund.

Thanks to last year’s mess, now when I hear “a millionaire is getting into the race,” any race, I’m skeptical. Besides, sometimes in South Jersey the word millionaire is loosely defined by the Democrats. I’m old enough to remember the Democrat’s negative ads attacking former Cumberland County Freeholder, Prosecutor and Surrogate Art Marchand as “Millionaire Marchand.” He was a client back in 2009 when he and George Shivery lost the Assembly primary “after a split in the Gloucester County Republican Party” screwed up the entire election year. Trust me, Marchand was no self-funder!

So, mostly because of last year I decided to check and see if the newest of the announced candidates, David Richter, really can self-fund a campaign.

I had no doubt Richter has some money as his children and my client U.S. Senate candidate Tricia Flanagan’s kids attend the same private school where per child tuition is about the same as the MSRP on a new Ford Edge.

The first thing I did was went to the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives website to check financial disclosure forms. Unfortunately, Richter hasn’t filed yet, so off to Google I went.

Because I am not a total a$$hole I will not post the exact number I found, but I will say Richter is worth a lot more than the owner of my favorite diner and a lot less than multi-millionaire Bob Hugin. Granted, that’s a big range, but trust me, he ain’t hurting.

According to documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission Richter was doing quite well, with a seven figure annual income, before leaving Hill International:

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Richter received some pretty decent “other” compensation at Hill International too, including more than a $56,000 car allowance and over $21,000 in country club fees.

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Not only did he earn a nice salary, but as recently as May 31, 2017, Richter, in a letter to the Board of Directors of Hill International, Inc. made it clear that he “…and certain other members of the Richter family. Collectively, we own approximately 10.6 million shares, or 20.4%, of the outstanding common stock of Hill International, Inc.” I don’t know exactly what 20.4% of Hill International is worth, but I do know it’s many millions of dollars.

When it comes to Richter, there is no doubt he can self-fund. In fact, if he comes into the studio to appear on The Bob & Steve Show we might suspend our practice of paying for our guest’s breakfast and make him pay for our breakfast.

And, speaking of paying for breakfast for our guests, next time another CD2 candidate, Brian Fitzherbert, does our show he can pay for his own breakfast.

After reviewing Fitzherbert’s Financial Disclosure Report as filed with the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives I’m re-thinking the time he asked me how much I would charge to do a congressional campaign in CD2 and my answer of “more than you can afford.”

Fitzherbert doesn’t have Richter money, but he definitely has more than formerly alleged self-funder Singh. At 30 years old Fitzherbert owns three houses worth between $250,001 - $500,000 each, he’s also got a 401k, an IRA and earns more than $100,000 per year.

There is little doubt that Fitzherbert could come up with some cash for his campaign if he needed to.

The third announced candidate in the race, Robert “Bob” Patterson, according to his Financial Disclosure Form as filed with the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives owns nothing, except for what appears to be a joint bank account worth between $100,001 - $250,000. I doubt he’ll be funding his campaign, especially considering he lists unemployment compensation of $8,600 as part of his income.

It’s clear the two frontrunners for next year’s GOP congressional primary will not be underfunded in their campaign to put the 2nd congressional district back in the Republican column.

Bob and I, which means mostly ,I will continue to research the candidates to help our fellow Republicans avoid getting stuck with a weak candidate next year.

Stay tuned!

Note: While Bob has endorsed Brian Fitzherbert for next year’s CD2 primary, Steve is completely neutral and making no endorsement

Will The Unofficial South Jersey Young Republican Organization Ever Get Its House In Order?

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I’ll start with a disclaimer: This post is NOT me taking a shot at young Republicans. It is me saying, once again, that the “leaders” of a rogue young Republican organization better start getting their house in order before they have a negative impact on the officially chartered young Republican organization.

To be clear, the South Jersey Young Republicans are not chartered and therefore not officially recognized by the Young Republican National Federation (YRNF). The Young Republican Federation of New Jersey (YRFNJ) is chartered and that means they are officially recognized.

Both organizations are fairly active on social media. The difference is the officially recognized group doesn’t post stupid stuff. The unofficial group tends to post stuff without bothering to gather facts, like the time the organization’s apparently self-appointed leader, Jenna Evans, made the false claim that Atlantic County Young Republicans Chairman Brian Fitzherbert tried to sabotage one of their events.

Evans’s claims were untrue, but that didn’t stop her, and others, from making the claim without checking the facts.

Well, it turns out Evans, or the person running her group’s Facebook page, still insists on posting things without checking facts. For example:

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Granted, Evans and her sidekick Hirsh Singh (more on that in a bit), were only about 2 or 3 years old when that man stood in front of a tank at Tiananmen Square, but a simple Google search would have told them the guy was not run over by the tank.

One would think the leaders of the rogue young Republican group would fact check before sharing such an image. Apparently not.

And, just because I promised “more on that in a bit” here’s how I know Singh is Evans sidekick. Back in March, shortly after I wrote my piece proving that Evans didn’t know what she was talking about when she accused Fitzherbert of “sabotaging” her Atlantic City event she reached out to my radio show co-host Bob Greco. She set up a meeting with Greco, coincidentally not far from my house, and she brought Singh to that meeting. Two peas in a pod!

Why make it a point to out Singh as Evans sidekick? Singh wants to be Governor/Senator/Congressman/Senator and one would think that a guy who wants to be elected to an office who also appears to be a leader of a rogue YR organization might at least make sure that organization checks facts before posting to social media.

If the leaders of the rogue YR group do take the friendly advice and start fact checking before posting to social media, maybe then they’ll start thinking before posting distasteful items to their Facebook page:

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While I completely understand they were going for humor when they shared the above post to the South Jersey Young Republicans Facebook page I believe Evans and Singh should have thought for a minute before posting. Apparently, I’m not the only one who thinks the post wasn’t the smartest thing to do:

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“You’re kidding right?” And, “Probably should have deleted before posting this one. Keep it classy kids,” sum up my thoughts.

Sharing posts like the one above, while amusing to some, do nothing to advance the Republican cause and puts the official young Republican organization in the state at risk of being lumped in with the rogue organization. The lack of fact checking and thoughtless post sharing is not fair to the young Republicans who did things the right way and got chartered.

So, South Jersey Young Republicans, before you negatively impact the actual chartered Young Republican Federation of New Jersey please get your house in order