TOMS RIVER, NJ – Former Ocean County Chairman George Gilmore is back. On Thursday night, Gilmore defeated Ocean County Sheriff Michael Mastronardy.
Gilmore said under his leadership, he will bring the fractured Ocean County GOP back together and return to the days when it was the most respected and influential GOP organization in New Jersey.
In recent days Mastronardy’s campaign went negative and began making personal attacks against Gilmore supporters and Gilmore himself. Supporters of Gilmore began receiving threatening phone calls and text messages in recent days, pushing those on the fence in Gilmore’s direction.
The loss for Mastronardy is also a loss for GOP establishment political Chris Russell who allegedly scripted the negative campaign against Gilmore. Russell has now lost several key close races in recent years for Republicans.
Gilmore defeated Mastronardy’s 333 votes to 320. Ruthanne Scaturro, Gilmore’s running mate in the election defeated Barbara Lanuto 325 to 311 votes.
Mastronardy came into Thursday’s election with the Lakewood and Jackson Orthodox Jewish bloc vote in his favor. At the Lakewood polling station, Mastronardy received 71 votes to Gilmore’s 9.
Gilmore dominated Mastronardy at the Stafford Township polling place 75 votes to 45, giving him the necessary push into the winner’s circle he needed.
The news is ominous for the current leadership of the Ocean County leadership team that has viciously attacked Gilmore in recent years. At the Ocean County College gymnasium cheers were met with a feeling of darkness and heaviness in the room as Gilmore was announced the winner.