JACKSON TOWNSHIP, NJ – Jackson Township’s Republican Club on Wednesday united behind incumbent Mayor Michael Reina, after the majority of club members united in an effort to remove club President Todd Porter and Chairwoman Clara Glory’s influence from politics in the township.
Under Porter and Glory, the Jackson GOP has been sharply divided and dysfunctional in recent years. In a floor vote, overruling the club executive board which consists of handpicked representatives serving Glory and Porter, the club voter overwhelmingly against the Porter-Glory slate of candidates and behind incumbent Mayor Michael Reina.
Porter tried to block the floor vote after the club members rejected business owner Marty Flemming’s endorsement by club leadership aligned with Porter and Glory.
One prominent club leader who wished to remain anonymous questioned Glory’s motives in her continued role in township government and politics.
“Clara has sold her business to corporate interests. We all know Glory’s market is being razed and a Wawa gas station is being built there and she’s selling her house with plans to move out of Jackson,” the member who wished to remain anonymous over fear of reprisal. “What’s in it for her? What’s in it for her candidates? That’s why we said no and supported Reina.”
Glory held a private meeting at her home on Tuesday that included many prominent officials and candidates loyal to the bodega store owner.
Glory was censured by the Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel several years ago for hateful comments she made against residents on Facebook.
In recent years, Glory’s circle of influence in Jackson has shrunk as she maintains a grip on what’s left by using fear, intimidation and harassment of her political opponents.
Many Jackson Republicans are supporting the Glory faction not out of desire, but out of fear, another member of the club told us today.
“Clara runs this with an iron fist that is used to protect her and her family’s public and private interests in Jackson,” the member, who also wished to remain anonymous said. “If you’re not part of Clara’s circle, she’ll try to ruin you and your business and spread lies and misinformation to persuade others to join her caravan of hate and anger.”
Many members of Glory’s immediate family are employed by township and school board government.
“As long as Clara controls the Jackson Township Council and puts puppets willing to carry out her marching orders in town hall, she will control the public job market in town,” he added. “We said no to her candidates because they appear to be running for Clara and not for Jackson. She needs that power to keep her family members past, present and future on the public payroll.”
Glory often refers to herself in public as the “Queen of Jackson”, proclaiming that her family is “Jackson royalty”.
Glory now intends to run a full slate of candidates against her own political party in November after being defeated.