TOMS RIVER-Toms River Township Republicans are reeling after a series of narrow losses in the polls on election night cost the party three seats on the all-Republican council.
In Ward 1, Democrat Daniel Rodrick defeated Republican Kevin Geoghegan by nearly 10 points; Democrat Laurie Huryk defeated Republican Louis Gallipoli by just 83 votes and Democrat Terrance Turnbach defeated Alfonso Manforti by just 142 votes.
The only winner on the Republican slate this year was Maria Maruca in Ward one who defeated her opponent, Anthony Colucci by approximately 300 votes.
Across Toms River, Republican gubernatorial candidate Kim Guadagno had leads of more than 40 points in some districts, but that support of the Republican for governor failed to deliver votes for local Republican candidates dealing with backlash on local issues.
Democrats backdoored Republicans last week by creating a newspaper called the “Toms River Tribune” which caught local Republicans off guard, combined with a powerful social media punch across the board by Democrats. For the last weeks of the campaign, Republicans were operating in defensive mode.
Democrats were extremely active on social media this campaign season, pushing their anti-development agenda and criticizing Republicans handling of local issues facing the community.
Republicans were just 300 votes shy of losing their majority on the seven-member council, but managed to retain a 4-3 majority with Maruca’s win.