TOMS RIVER-The Ocean County GOP leadership has made its formal third congressional district endorsement of former Burlington County Freeholder Kate Gibbs. The 9 member panel voted unanimously for Gibbs, who until this week had the full support of the party leaders and rank and file Republicans. Gibbs also received the endorsement of the Burlington County GOP meaning she will have the “Trump” party line on the June Republican primary ballot.
The Ocean County GOP screening panel includes Ocean County Freeholders Jack Kelly, Virginia Haines, and Gary Quinn; Jackson Mayor Michael Reina; Sheriff Michael Mastronardy; New Jersey State Senator Robert Singer; Point Pleasant Mayor Robert A. Saboski, GOP Vice Chairwoman Barbara Lanuto and Jerry Dasti of the law firm Dasti & McGuckin.
The day before the screening committee meeting, a bombshell report in the Asbury Park Press chronicled several run-ins Gibbs had with the law between 2006 and 2014. In 2006, Gibbs was arrested for shoplifting at Kohl’s department store. She pleaded guilty to the charge and paid fines and court fees. Gibbs, now running for Congress, has been banned from shopping at Kohl’s.
In 2008, Gibbs was arrested and charged for possessing 50 grams of marijuana in Long Beach Township.
In 2014, Gibbs was charged again, this time in Sea Bright for possession of alcohol on the beach.
Finally, in the Press report, Gibbs was sued by her landlord on nine occasions between 2006 and 2008.
Gibbs defeated millionaire business owner David Richter, CEO of Hill International, an international construction firm.
The screening committee also chose to endorse North Jersey pharmaceutical executive Rikin Mehta for U.S. Senate over conservative activist Hirsh Singh. Mehta, a registered Democrat until 2016 and former Obama era USDA employee also received unanimous consent by the nine-member committee.
“We’re excited about Kate,” said Republican county chairman Frank Holman III in a New Jersey Globe article. “We felt comfortable with her answers.”
On Facebook, Gibbs thanked Holman for his endorsement and support, adding, “I know I can win this race and flip this seat back to the Republican column and I look forward to the Ocean County Republican Convention next month to make that case and earn their full endorsement.”
Photo by Kate Gibbs, Facebook Campaign Page.